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Letter: Join us next month

Now for some positive comments — The Franklin County community has supported the Franklin County Flying Monkeys generously since 2007, when my son and daughter and friends decided to join me at the Harbor to the Bay AIDS Benefit Bike Ride. We ride from Boston to Provincetown — 125 miles — in one day and 100 percent of the money donated goes to the charity we select.

We raise funds from Community Research Initiative of New England, the only one of the five beneficiaries that serves western Massachusetts. While most agencies have had to cut back on services, CRI has managed to still service HIV patients in our area.

One of our biggest fundraisers has been our golf tournament. This year, however, we could not find a venue that worked for us. We are still going to have the “best tag sale ever” on Aug. 17 at 486 Main St., Main and High streets in Greenfield. Every year this tag sale has gotten better and better, not only because people donate items for sale and buy stuff, but because people who have been touched by the HIV virus show up. They come to renew old friendships, network, donate, support and encourage each other and us.

I am always amazed and touched by the outpouring of the people who live here. Their hearts are huge in every way. They are caring, thoughtful and giving.

So join us on Aug. 17. Bring items to donate or money to buy stuff. Come and see old friends, make new friends, laugh, cry and talk. Remind yourselves of how great our community is and how much good we can do for people we don’t even know.

Remind yourself of how great you people are — hilltowns, surrounding towns, from Orange to Charlemont from Bernardston to Whately — our Franklin County should be very proud of its people.

Thank you all for showing up ...

TONI MALONEY

Greenfield

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