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Berthoud Habitat for Humanity casino night and auction puts the “lumber” in lumberjack

January 18, 2019 | Local News

By Autumn Leopold

The Surveyor

Berthoud Habitat for Humanity (BHFH) is keeping it “Colorado” for their annual Casino Night and Auction on Feb. 2 at 5 p.m. This year’s theme, in true Colorado style, is Flannel and Fire pits, and as organizers are putting it, they are asking the public to help put the “lumber” in lumberjack. The event will be held at Grace Place, Berthoud located at 375 Meadowlark Dr.

Photo by Amber McIver-Traywick – The 2018 Berthoud Habitat for Humanity luau themed fundraiser.

The inspiration for this year’s auction theme came from fire pits donated to the Berthoud Habitat ReStore by local philanthropists and retired business owners, Staci and Willie Wexler. The  donated fire pits gave store manager Sharon Derstine and assistant manager Mel Vannoy the idea to have people show up in their flannels, play a few games, eat some comfort food, and learn how to help Berthoud Habitat partner with local families to create safe and affordable homes.

Last year the event sold out and went over capacity, with 135-plus attendees raising $20,000. Berthoud Habitat Executive Director Jan Dowker said they would like to exceed those numbers with 150 attendees and raise $20,000 or more this year.

When asked what BHFH’s overall goal for 2019 would be, Dowker stated, “To continue building our capacity. There is a critical need for affordable homes in our area. We would love to create more partnerships with the community to make Berthoud Habitat as important as other causes by showing the public what kind of impact they have when they help to change the life of a whole family.”

The support BHFH offers doesn’t simply end when the home is complete and the family moves in. “Many people may not realize (BHFH) offers continuing family support services even after the home is built and occupied,” said Dowker. “We help make smart home ownership possible by holding lectures and creating partnerships for homeowners.” One such partnership for BHFH homeowners is a connection with Poudre Valley REA’s solar garden to help reduce their electric bill, which saves a significant amount of money each year.

Already this year BHFH is in the midst of building five new homes. The organization is always seeking applications from partner families who live and work in the Berthoud or Campion affiliate service area. For further information about qualifying for a home with Berthoud Habitat go to

Some of the amazing items up for auction at the event will include: a five day out-of-state trip, exams and gift certificates from Berthoud Vision and Berthoud Dental, a City of Berthoud pool pass, upscale handmade goods from Aspen Lamps and Hope Chests, gift baskets, spa sessions, grab bags, restaurant gift certificates, and a can’t-miss dessert auction.

Photo by Amber McIver-Traywick – Berthoud Habitat for Humanity Casino Night Luau for Lumber 2018 attendees enjoy a game of Blackjack.

For those interested in donating items for the live and silent auction, there is still time to do so. For more information on sponsorship packages and to receive a donation letter, please contact event co-chairs, Jan Dowker at 303-868-1690 or Sharon Derstine at 970-532-2878.

The casino portion of the event will once again be sponsored by Colorado Casino Nights. If you are ready for casino action you can expect Blackjack, Texas Hold‘em, Roulette and Craps. And for those who have never played, it’s a fun opportunity to learn.

Tickets to this event must be purchased in advance online at or at the Berthoud ReStore. Tickets are $45 per person and include dinner, provided by Origins Catering, one beverage ticket, live and silent auctions, live entertainment by local MC Aaron Roth, and $250 in casino chips.

Get your flannel on and join Berthoud Habitat for Humanity for food, fun, and a good cause.


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