Park Dance Proceeds Benefit Seeing Hand

Many Wheeling residents can still remember the summer teen dances once held at Wheeling Park’s White Palace, and now they can relive those days while helping a good cause.

From the 1950s until the early ’90s, teens from all over the Upper Ohio Valley attended the dances sponsored by the Wheeling Park Commission. It was a way for local teens to meet with friends and make new ones from all over the region.

A few years ago, Tim Boudreau of Wheeling asked via social media whether anyone else remembered the old dances. The responses he received expressed so much interest in a revival that in 2010, a small group of people set up the Park Dances Revisited. The 2010 dance was so successful that it has been repeated the past two years – with proceeds donated to local charities.

In 2010, the donation was given to the Oglebay Foundation for deployed military families. In 2011, the proceeds went to the Wheeling Veterans Association.

For 2012, $4,000 in proceeds was donated to the Greater Wheeling Seeing Hand Association. With roots dating back to 1936, the association offers an array of specialized services for blind and visually impaired individuals. Rehabilitation services, community education, advocacy and a low vision clinic are available to blind and visually impaired people through the association regardless of age, race, sex, religion or income status.

Karen Haught, executive director of the Seeing Hand Association, received the donation check from Park Dances Revisited Treasurer Ed Boudreau on Friday morning.

“What a great time,” Haught said regarding this year’s dance. “We are very satisfied with the donation we received. Being a small, nonprofit (organization), as for all, funding is always an issue.”