March 17, 2019 – Richfield, WI – Over 300 people were in attendance at the annual Party with a Purpose as the Kettle Moraine YMCA celebrated its 50th year. The event paid tribute to founders Vic Albiero, Bernie Zeigler, Cliff Nelson and Norman Schowalter.
Albiero’s children Tom Albiero and Jacci Gambucci kicked off the evening and paid tribute to the Y’s first executive director Jack Murray, who received a standing ovation.
The theme of the night was to celebrate the history of the YMCA, the capital campaign in 1977 that raised $2 million and saw the original building open in 1978. The evening was also dedicated to bringing the community together to create an awareness and build momentum to support friends and neighbors in need.
Special guests featured Roo and of West Bend.
The couple started dating when they were in high school and the God took them on an incredible journey that included Roo going through a heart transplant and double lung transplant when he was 33 years old.
The Bublitz family found great support through the community at the Kettle Moraine YMCA.
“What has made the biggest impact in my life is the connection I’ve made with other moms at the Y,” said Erika. “We sit and talk about life and marriage and kids and just be there to support each other.”
One of the families the Bublitzs connected with at the Y started a fundraiser and traveled with Roo to doctor’s appointments in Pittsburgh.
“I’m now five years post transplant,” said Roo. “I work full time and I’ve started working out. I recently completed climbing 47 floors, 94 flights of stairs to the top of the U.S. Bank building.”
Roo ran his first 5K last year and plans to do two more this year.
“At the Y there are friends who motivate us and where our kids can be part of a group and not be held back by finances,” Roo said.
This year’s 2019 Annual KMYMCA Campaign goal is $300,000. This goal is achieved with the help of the Albiero family, the 18th annual golf outing in May, board, staff and community donations.
Today the West Washington and River Shores Branch of the YMCA serves more than 13,000 members. With campaign initiatives, approximately one-in-six receive some form of assistance to make certain they can continue to participate in services at the Kettle Moraine YMCA.