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FARMER CITY - When Mike Roy's son, Zachary, was born eight years ago with cystic fibrosis, Roy decided he had to do something to fight the disease.

Roy organized the annual Bowl for Breath fund-raiser. The eighth annual event will be Saturday at Mustang Sally's in LeRoy.

"We keep plugging away at this and hoping that doing these (events) raises awareness and also helps out other families less fortunate," he said.

Roy said Zachary, who turns 8 in two weeks, is "doing great" and will be joining him at the fund-raiser to help support the cause.

Roy said half the money raised goes to local clinics in Champaign and Peoria to help families without insurance. The other half goes to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation in Maryland to help fund research.

This year's goal is to raise $15,000, which is about $1,500 more than last year.

There will be: a horse shoe tournament at noon; bowling from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m.; a performance by Sister Groove at 8:30 p.m.; and live auctions at 10:30 p.m., including autographed items, Illini packages, hotel stays, and a used car donated by Hutch's Motor Company in LeRoy. There will be raffles and giveaways all day.

Monetary donations can be made to Flanagan State Bank in LeRoy. For more information, call Roy at (309) 838-3704 or email

Cystic fibrosis is an inherited, chronic disease that affects the lungs and digestive system of about 30,000 children and adults in the United States and about 70,000 worldwide, according to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Web site. A defective gene causes the body to produce unusually thick, sticky mucus that leads to lung infections and damages the pancreas.

In the 1950s, few children with cystic fibrosis lived to attend elementary school, according to the Web site. Many people with the disease now can expect to live into their 30s, 40s and beyond, it said.

Ribbons up at downtown park - A group of local volunteers have put up yellow, wooden ribbons in Farmer City's downtown park to remind residents of the 12 servicemen and women from the area who are currently on active military duty.

"It's nice to somehow show support for the men and women in service from our area," said Mary Walker, a member of that group, the Farmer City Tourism Committee.

The 12 wooden ribbons were cut out and painted by Debbie Peyton of Farmer City and placed on lampposts surrounding the downtown park.

Walker said anyone who knows of a man or woman from the FarmerCity-based Blue Ridge school district who is serving in the military should call her at (309) 928-2676.


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