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Help the Painted Turtle Camp

Posted: June 15, 2013 5:38 p.m.
Updated: June 15, 2013 5:38 p.m.

Happy Father’s Day to all the wonderful dads in the Santa Clarita Valley. I am always impressed at the number of fabulous fathers that live in the SCV!

SeriousFun helps camp

The Painted Turtle, which recently announced the forced cancellation of its summer season due to damage caused by the Powerhouse wildfires in Lake Hughes, will receive some much needed assistance from fellow camps in the SeriousFun Children’s Network. SeriousFun’s Board of Directors has issued a $100,000 matching grant to challenge its donors, supporters of The Painted Turtle and the general public to donate to The Painted Turtle Camp Fund. Money raised will be used to make repairs and meet camp operations, as well as to provide alternative programming for as many children as possible who had been slated to attend camp.

In addition, SeriousFun Camps and their Support Center are working with The Painted Turtle to relocate displaced staff to other SeriousFun programs across world and create ways to serve children who have been eagerly awaiting a camp experience at The Painted Turtle.

"We’re grateful that our family of SeriousFun Camps has rallied behind us, many even offering to come out personally to assist with the cleanup efforts," said Blake Maher, executive director, The Painted Turtle. "I hope their support will inspire others to help The Painted Turtle reopen as quickly as possible."

Support may also be provided to assist The Painted Turtle in delivering alternate programming, such as day camps at other locations, "Camp on the Road" gatherings, and hospital outreach services to children and families. These options are being explored as ways to still deliver the camp experience despite the summer cancellation.

The Painted Turtle, a member camp in SeriousFun Children’s Network, which includes 30 camps and programs worldwide, was scheduled to begin its summer camp season on June 14. During the summers, the camp usually hosts eight week-long sessions, welcoming 800 children with serious illnesses, such as skeletal dysplasia, kidney disease and transplant, hemophilia, and Crohn’s and colitis diseases, among others.

"The matching donation from SeriousFun is a means of joining our member camps in providing support when and where it is needed." said John C. Read, president and CEO, SeriousFun Children’s Network. "The goal is to see the first camper return to camp, and our camps and the Support Center will continue to support The Painted Turtle in every way possible until that happens. We want to encourage the public to rally with us and donate to help with the restoration efforts."

How to help

SeriousFun has set up a direct link on its web site at to accept online donations on behalf of The Painted Turtle. Checks made payable to SeriousFun Children’s Network can also be mailed to SeriousFun Support Center, 228 Saugatuck Ave., Westport, CT 06880. All checks should indicate ‘The Painted Turtle Camp Fund’ on the note field of the check. 100 percent of donations received will go directly to camp.

Additionally, any donation made directly to The Painted Turtle Camp Fund will be eligible to receive matching funds. Those donations can be made at or via check by mail at to The Painted Turtle, Administrative Office, 1300 4th Street, Suite 300, Santa Monica, CA 90401. All checks should indicate ‘The Painted Turtle Camp Fund’ on the note field of the check.

Evening Under the Stars

Can it really be 20 years? The Michael Hoefflin Foundation’s 20th annual Evening Under the Stars gala dinner and charity auction will be held Sept. 21 at the Mann BioMedical Park in Valencia. Good vibrations are sure to be had all night, as the Surf Tunes, the original backup singers to the Beach Boys, will perform at the festivities.

The evening, which for 19 years has been one of the most widely anticipated charity events in the Santa Clarita Valley, will include a dinner catered by Salt Creek Grill, and the opportunity to bid on sought-after auction items.

Event co-chairs are Tim and Jenny Ketchepaw, and Julie Benson. To find out more about this magical evening please visit for ticket information and what the Michael Hoefflin Foundation is doing in our community.

Michele E. Buttelman is the features and entertainment editor of The Signal. She can be reached by email at Follow SCV Scene on Facebook and @SCVScene on Twitter.


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