PELHAM, N.Y. – Nearly 100 people from Pelham, Pelham Manor and New Rochelle turned out to celebrate the 17th anniversary of Accents on Antiques as items like a Waterford crystal pitcher and signed bats by Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter were raffled and auctioned off to raise money for Sound Shore Medical Center.
The store, which is located on the corner of Wolfs Lane, donates all of its proceeds to the hospital. This year the store presented a check for $60,000 to the president and CEO of Sound Shore Medical Center, John Spicer of Pelham. Over the years, the store has raised more than $1 million for the New Rochelle-based hospital.
“I wish I had 50 of these places,” said the Pelham resident who helped found the store. “It’s good for the neighborhood and good for the hospital.”
Spicer was a founding member along with Accents on Antiques treasurer Ursla Huff, president Celeste Coughlin and three other women.
“We started this thing and it was a good concept, but it took off and for the past 17 years, they’ve been running a profit,” said Spicer. “The reason they can do it is it’s all staffed by volunteers.”
The money raised throughout the years, plus the $60,000 and what Spicer estimated to be about $2,500 from the raffle, auction and donations will go towards developing a larger emergency room. More than 42 items were auctioned and raffled Thursday.
“Our emergency room was built for about 25,000 visits,” he said of the size problem. “We’re seeing 40,000” annually. “So, we’re essentially going to double the size. That means more treatment rooms, more privacy for patients, we’ll have a CAT scan right in the emergency room – it’s a lot of good stuff.”
So far the hospital has raised $4 million for the $7 million, 18-month project and hopes to make up the difference through a golf tournament, the annual hospital dinner dance and other fundraisers. Work on the hospital will take place in phases and they plan on starting at the end of the year.
As a founding member, Coughlin could not believe the store was still thriving after 17 years.
“We hoped for two or three years and we’re thrilled that we went way beyond that – it’s perfect,” said Coughlin. “It means there are a lot of good people willing to donate their time free of charge and they love this place as much as the people who started it.”
One of those people is 10-year volunteer and Pelham Manor resident, Carmela Stalile. She thought that the auction was wonderful and was glad she decided to work at the store after retiring.
Coughlin pointed out that the store is always looking for donations and are “forever in the debt” of those who donate. She was pleased to see 17 years later, there was still a big turnout for the auction.