The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

January 28, 2013

Funny fundraiser | YWCA's 'Death by Chocolate' benefit will feature 'Just Dana'


JOHNSTOWN — For a great Valentine’s Day date night or a girls’ night out, no one can go wrong with chocolate.

The fifth annual “Death by Chocolate” fundraiser to benefit the YWCA of Greater Johnstown will be held from 5 to 9 p.m. Feb. 9 at Woodside Bar and Grill, 430 Highland Park Road, Johnstown.

Event coordinator Marcia Polonkey of Upper Yoder Township said the fundraiser will feature chocolate desserts of every description.

“There is always a huge variety of chocolate goodies to select from, including homemade chocolate peanut butter squares, Texas sheet cake and cheesecakes, just to name a few,” Polonkey said.

“Local businesses also donate their best decadent chocolates for the event, such as Blaine Boring’s chocolate-covered strawberries.”

There also will be delicacies from Mids Candies and Boyer Chocolates.

In addition to plenty of chocolates, there will be an Italian buffet dinner, door prizes, comedy and music.

Once again, local comedienne Dana Fabina of Richland Township, known as “Just Dana,” will perform.

“She is such a funny lady who uses her Italian family and children as her source of material,” Polonkey said.

“You are guaranteed to laugh yourself silly. No graphic language is used in her routine.”

Musician Sam Coco, who plays in the local band Hardrok, KoKo & Jo and directs Johnstown Symphony Chorus, will perform in between Fabina’s everyday family-experience comedy.

This year, the YWCA has partnered with the John B. Gunter Leadership Initiative Class of 2013 through the Greater Johnstown/Cambria County Chamber of Commerce.

The group, called Heroes Helpers, is purchasing tickets to attend “Death by Chocolate” for the families of deployed soldiers from our area so they can get out and celebrate Valentine’s Day while their loved ones are deployed.

Proceeds from the event will benefit the YWCA’s Rise & Shine mentoring program, the Stork’s Blessings program and the Cinderella Project, which was able to lend more than 100 prom dresses to local girls at no cost in 2012.

“Last year, we raised $1,300 for all the programs, and we hope to surpass that again this year,” Polonkey said.

“These programs are vital to our community and our mission.”

If you go ...

What: Fifth annual “Death by Chocolate” fundraiser.

When: 5 to 9 p.m. Feb. 9.

Where: Woodside Bar and Grill, 430 Highland Park Road, Johnstown.

Tickets: $30 per person or $50 per couple.

Information: 536-3519.

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