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Theft leaves club in a bind
Thursday, September 5, 2013
By BEN R. WILLIAMS - Bulletin Staff Writer
There is no good time to have property stolen, but for the Stanleytown Ruritan Club, the timing could not have been worse.
According to Betty Scott, third year director of the Stanleytown Ruritan Club, a trailer belonging to the club was stolen from the parking lot of Stanleytown United Methodist Church between the evening of Tuesday, Aug. 27, and Friday morning, Aug. 30.
The trailer — a white, 12-foot Pro-Line model — contained all of the supplies the club uses to make its signature pancake breakfasts, including three large gas grills, a gas cooker, coffee pots, a deep freezer, serving racks and propane tanks, according to Scott.
According to Lt. David White with the Henry County Sheriff’s Office, the total value of the trailer and the items inside it was estimated at $5,638.87. The incident is under investigation, he said.
“The way the Ruritans make their money is having pancake breakfasts,” Scott said. “Our big project is the Bassett Heritage Day Festival on the 14th of September. We start the day with a pancake breakfast at 7 a.m.”
With less than two weeks until the festival, the theft of the trailer has been a blow for the Ruritan Club.
“It’s put us in a bad way,” Scott said. “This is one of those things ... it just sort of stabs you. The benefit of what was in that trailer didn’t help just us, it helped the community.”
The Ruritan Club is a community service organization, Scott said. The money it raises is invested in the community in various ways, including seven scholarships.
Although the theft of the trailer has caused difficulties for the club, it doesn’t necessarily mean there won’t be pancakes at the Heritage Festival.
“We are going to have this breakfast on the 14th,” Scott said. “We’re going to do this somehow.”
A couple of local churches have offered to loan the club their grills for the event, Scott said, and the club is also planning to reach out to other area Ruritan Clubs to see if additional equipment can be borrowed.
In the meantime, “we have some money promised (to cover) a $1,000 reward for the arrest and conviction of the perpetrators,” she said.
Anyone with information on the theft is urged to call the Henry County Sheriff’s Office at 638-8751.