Fayette County: Actor's widow to speak at hospice event

Lisa Niemi Swayze, widow of actor Patrick Swayze, will be in Lexington on Thursday to share her story of caring for her husband during his battle with pancreatic cancer and her experiences about walking through end-of-life issues with a loved one. Her appearance will benefit Hospice of the Bluegrass.

Swayze recently wrote a book, Worth Fighting For, that chronicles her last months with her husband of 34 years. She will have a book signing after the presentation.

Swayze will speak at 7:30 p.m. at The Signature Club of Lansdowne. Tickets are $50 and are available at, or by calling (859) 296-6116.

FEMA awards funds to food, shelter programs

Fayette County has been chosen to receive $108,841 to supplement emergency food and shelter programs in the area.

The selection was made by a national board chaired by the Federal Emergency Management Agency that consists of representatives from American Red Cross, Salvation Army, Council of Jewish Federations, Catholic Charities USA, National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA and United Way of America. They will provide the administrative staff and function as fiscal agent. The board is charged with distributing money appropriated by Congress to help expand the capacity of food and shelter programs in high-need areas.

A local board made up of representatives from United Way of the Bluegrass and government and social service agencies will determine how the money is to be distributed among local emergency food and shelter programs.

Local governmental or private voluntary organizations chosen to receive money must be non-profit; have an accounting system and, at certain levels of funding, conduct an annual audit; practice non- discrimination; have demonstrated the capability to deliver emergency food and/or shelter programs; and if they are a private voluntary organization, have a voluntary board. Qualifying organizations are urged to apply.

Information on the program may be obtained by contacting Ruslyn Case-Compton at Catholic Charities, (859) 253-1993, Ext. 215. Individuals and/or organizations wishing to serve on the local board also should contact Case-Compton. The application deadline is Sept. 28.

Weight loss challenge to start

The Community Weight Loss Challenge kick-off registration and health fair will be 5:30 to 8 p.m. Thursday at William Wells Brown Community Center, 548 East Sixth Street. To participate in the free challenge. you must register Thursday. Free exercise classes and workshops for adults 18 and older will be at 6 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday through Dec. 13. Solid Gold Aerobics for those 50 and older will be 10 to 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 22 to Dec. 8. For information, call Jessica at (859) 288-2332.

Class on quitting smoking to begin

The Lexington-Fayette County Health Department is offering a fall session for those who want to stop smoking.

Classes using the Cooper-Clayton Method will be 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Wednesdays beginning Sept. 26 at Public Health South, 2433 Regency Road. The 12-week class costs $100, which is used for nicotine replacement products such as patches, lozenges or gum.

The amount may be paid in full or $10 a week for the first 10 weeks of class. Financial plans may be considered for those unable to pay the full amount. Call (859) 288-2457 for more information or to sign up.

Fund-raiser pulls in $4,726

The Labor Day fund-raiser for Lexington teen Shaina Whitt raised $4,726. The Lexington Youth Soccer Association put on the event to help cover the medical expenses for Whitt, a long-time player. The 15-year-old was injured in a bicycle accident in early August and is undergoing in-patient rehabilitation.

Terry Woods, one of the event organizers, said the fund-raiser at the Masterson Station soccer fields was "an example showing what just reaching or stretching one hand out to another can do."