The foster, adopted and community children served by Pathway Caring for Children were the recipients of a generous donation of toys for under their Christmas trees given by members of the Akron-Canton Chapter 19 Muskie Maniacs group.
North Canton resident Wendy Tracy, executive director of Pathway Caring for Children, accepted the Muskie Maniacs' donation Friday during an event held at the “home” of the North Canton Eagles.
In recent years the Muskie Maniacs have “adopted” Pathway Caring for Children and participated in fundraisers to support the private, non-profit social service agency’s “Home is Where the Heart Is” annual auction and collected toys for the Children of Pathway.
“The guys have a real soft spot for children and helping these kids is just something they have taken on. I am very proud to be associated with them,” said Gerhard Schmidt, a Muskie Club member who also serves on the Pathway Caring for Children Board of Directors. “We are glad that these toys can help these kids have a more normal Christmas.”
Schmidt credits the toy donation program to former Muskie club president Gordon Seldon, current president Mike Mordas and incoming president Mike Sandridge, along with the Muskie Club Board of Directors.
The club plans to invite Pathway children to their fishing derby for kids this coming year.
Schmidt said the club has about 120 members who camp and fish together. “Every once in a while we even catch a real nice fish,” he added.
The Muskie Maniacs are part of Muskie Inc., a non-profit organization whose mission it is to:
- Promote a high quality muskellunge sport fishery.
- Support selected conservation practices based on scientific merit and carried out by authorized federal and state agencies.
- Promote muskellunge research.
- Establish hatcheries and rearing ponds and introduce the species into suitable waters.
- Support the abatement of water pollution.
- Maintain records of habits, growth, and range of species.
- Disseminate muskellunge information.
- Promote good fellowship and sportsmanship among men, women and children.
The mission of Pathway Caring for Children is “to empower children and their families to realize their potential and achieve the possibilities of their lives through innovative mental health, foster care and adoption services.”