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Caruso to be honored by United Way

LOCK HAVEN — In March, Joe Caruso returned to his roots to speak at Big Woods Bible Church.

In May, the former professional baseball player will be making another trip to his hometown of Lock Haven.

Caruso is the 2019 honoree at the Clinton County United Way’s Eighth annual Sports Night and Fine Arts Auction. The event runs from 6:30 to 10 p.m. on Friday, May 3 at the Piper Aviation Museum in Lock Haven.

“Joe is a nice guy, he’s got a story to tell and he’s a good role model,” said Clinton County United Way Executive Director Maria Garlick. “We decided to honor Joe for his dedication to Clinton County.”

Caruso said that he’s excited to come back and help the United Way.

“They wanted to honor me for what I’m doing to serve communities and I just thought ‘man, I’d love to come back and get that honor.’ I’m just so blessed to be able to come and do that,” Caruso said.

In addition to hearing Caruso speak, those in attendance will get plenty of food and drink. There will be a 50/50 drawing, live and silent auctions, DJ “Chet the Jet” Chester Rogers will provide music and it’s also casino night.

“Our theme is ‘old school’ casino night. We’re going to do it Vegas-style and we will have three casino tables — a blackjack table, a roulette table and a craps table,” Garlick said. “It’s going to be a little more formal this year.”

According to Garlick, there won’t be any cash prizes involved with the casino chips, but chips will have value for a major prize raffle.

The master of cermonies will be Clinton County United Way board member and entrepreneur Bobby Maguire.

Garlick is hoping that the community turns out for the event.

“This is our biggest fundraiser of the year. It’s our biggie, so it’s all done really well,” Garlick said. “It’s just a really cool thing.”

Garlick has high hopes for the event.

“We’re shooting for $40,000. We always pull about that, but we would love to exceed it,” she said. “We’ve had some more expense this year.”

Garlick said the United Way chose the Piper Aviation Museum because they like to use different venues in the area.

“We like to spread it around the community,” Garlick said.

Tickets for the event are $40 per person. The $40 price tag includes all food, beer and wine. Tickets are available at the United Way offices at the Garden Building, 232 E. Main St., Lock Haven.

“I’m really excited that we got Joe and that he’s willing to come back,” Garlick said. “He’s so good to our community. I hope that everyone is able to come and hear him speak.”