DANSVILLE — It started out as one student’s community service project, and expanded to the entire community.
Cheyenne Markowski wanted to help out Noyes Health Auxiliary, and that is exactly what she did.
The Dansville Trout Derby was organized and ran by Cheyenne Markowski, her family, and fellow Dansville central high school students on April 30. Once everything was in order they presented the check to Noyes Health Auxiliary President Gerri Long on May 27 at 11 a.m. at Noyes Health.
Geoffrey Markowski, MD, Cheyenne’s father went door-to-door asking Poags Hole property owners if they could use their creekside property for the derby.
Suzanne Markowski, business teacher, Cheyenne’s mother, helped get the Future Business Leaders of America on board with the project.
There were 200 brown trout stocked in Canaseraga Creek, and 80 of them were caught. All the fish left in the creek, and donations from the community added up to $9,100 for the Noyes Health Auxiliary.
“Everyone said yes to allowing us to use their property,” Suzanne Markowski said. “They wanted to help with this great cause. We were extremely successful. We wanted to help serve our community. We have always taught our daughter to care for her community as well.”
“In the beginning we were worried about the cost,” Suzanne Markowski continued. “The community really came together. The Poags Hole community is a real tight group. We own some property by the creek as well.”
The Markowski’s received over 100 donors and sponsors for the derby.
“The generosity in this community is amazing,” Suzanne Markowski said.
Long said she was overwhelmed with the generosity.
“This will go towards helping our pledge,” she said. “We had a $305,500 pledge, and have paid $131,500 of it, so this will go towards paying that off.”
“This is a wonderful learning experience for Cheyenne,” Long continued. “She came up with a plan, stuck with it, and saw how successful it was.”
Noyes Health Auxiliary Past President Bonnie Sisak thinks the project is wonderful.
Noyes Health Auxiliary Vice-President Mary Ann Scharmberg agreed with Sisak.
“It is fabulous. It is such a novel idea the kids came up with,” she said. “I am so happy they chose us after all that hard work.”
Dansville Central Superintendent Paul Alioto said he is incredibly proud of Cheyenne Markowski.
“I am grateful to the family, and very proud of the Business Leaders of America who helped out Cheyenne,” he said. “This touched so many elements of this community. We are very proud of Cheyenne.”
Cheyenne Markowski said she wants to do this fundraiser again next year, and hopes to help someone again.
“There are so many worthwhile projects that need help in this community,” Geoffrey Markowski said.
Geoffrey Marowski was pleasantly surprised to see so many men, women, and children come out to help.
“I look forward to doing it again next year,” he said. “We will keep our options open, but we might help out the hospital again.”
Dansville Public Library offered fishing poles to children who had a library card.
Dansville Ice Cream Island Owner Daniel Howard is a student at Dansville Central who helped out Cheyenne Markowski with hot dogs and refreshments.
Noyes Health Public Relations Director Cynthia Oswald loves that this was a project put together by high school students, and that young children participated.
“They encouraged young students to give back to the community,” she said.
Cheyenne Marowski created a website to go along with her project, and was happy to see all the photos from the derby.
“The photos reflect the happiness and joy everyone felt while being at the derby,” she said.
“I am very into business and medical science, so I am narrowing down my choices for college,” Cheyenne Markowski continued. “I learned a lot from my parents, and see that business is an important field.”
Noyes Health Auxiliary was chosen since it is part of the emergency department and sees about 14,000 people a year.
“The emergency department is the center of the community, and we need it,” Cheyenne Markowski said. “I really wanted to help.”
Dansville Future Business Leaders of America members Margaret Swink and Paige Everman helped. Dansville Central teachers Anthony D'Agostino and Joie Petrillo helped.