11th Annual Patti McWalk is Sunday, April 22, at 1pm in Margate
MARGATE, N.J. — Margate resident Jennifer “Patti” McDonnell was a generous, outgoing sort with a zest for life, packing as much as she could into her relatively short time on earth before succumbing to a five-year battle with pancreatic cancer in February 2002 at age 43.
Less than two months after her passing, many of Patti’s multitude of friends — spearheaded by the patriarch of Margate’s popular bayside retreat Maynard’s Café, Al Troiano (who passed away in 2005) — put together a fundraiser on her birthday, April 18, and dubbed it the “Patti McWalk.”
Through pledges, sponsorships and merchandise sales, the walk raised $3,000 in its initial year, so the organizers turned into an annual event to benefit the South Jersey Cancer Fund. It raised $12,000 in its second year and, despite the recent economic woes, has consistently raised over $20,000 per year through individual and corporate donations to the S.J. Cancer Fund.
On Sunday, April 22, the 11th annual Patti McWalk will again start at Lucy the Elephant in Margate at 1pm (registration at noon), continue along the beach to the Margate Fishing Pier, and return to Lucy. It culminates with an after-event party at Maynard’s with food, drinks, raffle items, a Chinese auction, 50/50 and plenty of activities for the kids. Every cent raised is donated to the South Jersey Cancer Fund. Donations requested are $20 in advance or $25 the day of the walk.
“The reason it became a benefit for the South Jersey Cancer Fund is because it was Al Troiano’s favorite charity,” says Patti’s brother, Bob McDonnell.
Founded in 1964, the South Jersey Cancer Fund is an all-volunteer organization that provides financial assistance to cancer patients and their families in Atlantic, Cape May and Cumberland counties.
“It’s always a fun event for a worthy cause,” says Bob McDonnell. “It’s the kind of good time and camaraderie Patti really enjoyed.”
If you cannot attend but would like to make a donation, make checks payable to: South Jersey Cancer Fund and mail to: Patti McWalk, c/o Lisa Marinelli, 8105 Winchester Ave., Margate, N.J., 08402.
Call (609) 822-4220 or 350-6088 for more information.
11th Annual Patti McWalk
When: Sunday, April 22, noon registration, 1pm walk.
Where: Lucy the Elephant, Margate.
How Much: $20 per person ($10 for kids) in advance, $25 day of the walk.
Phone: (609) 822-4220 or 350-6088