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Celebrities kick off CrabFest

AHOSKIE – The first and newest fundraiser associated with CrabFest 2008 launched here last Thursday with a dinner served by local &uot;celebrities&uot; at Quinton’s Restaurant on Main Street.

Twelve area elected officials and people of prominence volunteered their time to serve dinners to customers eating in the restaurant.

After the bills were paid, approximately $1,000 was raised by the sale of 220 dinner plates.

Participating &uot;celebrities&uot; were attorney Louie Wilson III, Hertford County Commissioner-Elect Bill Mitchell, Northampton County Clerk of Court Venus Michelle Spruill, Bertie County Register of Deeds Belinda White, District 6B District Attorney Valerie Asbell, Hertford County Sheriff Juan Vaughan, Hertford County Register of Deeds Kathleen Wright, Gates County Clerk of Superior Court Nell Wiggins, HOPE Realty agent Dorothy D. Harris, Dr. Steven Ferguson, attorney Sammy Webb, and Sysco representative Stuart Wiant.

Bertie County Clerk of Superior Court John Tyler was unable to attend, but still contributed monetarily to the cause.

This year, the event is benefiting the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America (SCDAA).

CrabFest, a yearly seafood cookout and basketball tournament for charity, will begin its single elimination CrabFest Business Division tournament this Friday (July 25) at 6:30 p.m.

Local businesses such as ViQuest, Nucor Steel and Mugshotz Cafe have sponsored teams in this division.

Seafood plates, grill items and selected specialties such as deviled crabs, crabcakes and specially seasoned steamed and fried crabs will be sold during the games.

Saturday, starting at 9 a.m., the &uot;Top Gun&uot; double elimination division kicks off at Hertford County High School.

Teams include the Ahoskie Recreation Center, Roanoke Chowan Community College and Hertford County High School.

The teams will go up against defending tournament champion, the Huskies out of the Virginia peninsula.

Representatives from the SCDAA will distribute information during the Saturday games and answer any questions from the public.

This nationally sanctioned event will be no charge to the public.

According to the SCDAA, sickle cell disease is an inherited blood disorder that affects red blood cells. People with sickle cell disease have red blood cells that contain mostly hemoglobin-S, an abnormal type of hemoglobin.

Their website states, &uot;When sickle-shaped cells block small blood vessels, less blood can reach that part of the body. Tissue that does not receive a normal blood flow eventually becomes damaged. This is what causes the complications of sickle cell disease. There is currently no universal cure for sickle cell disease.&uot;

Donations to the cause can be made to the North Carolina Sickle Cell Foundation, with attention to Marcia Wright, at P.O. Box 5253, Jacksonville NC, 28540.

Please note that the donation is sent to help CrabFest 2008.