'Martinis and Manicures' get-togethers help local causes

Collection made for Safe Haven to recognize October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month


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Photos



  • Bob Keiber of Black Bear Film Festival helps cover the town with purple for domestic violence awareness. (Photo provided)




  • Dave Chant of Chant Realtors picks up his purple ribbons from board president Valerie O’Hare and board member Cheryl O’Sullivan. (Photo provided)




  • Tamara Chant, executive director of Safe Haven of Pike County (Photo provided)




  • Chief of Police Chad Stewart of Eastern Pike Police speaks to Safe Haven in Matamoras about a 20 percent rise in domestic violence (Photo provided)



By Anya Tikka

— About once a month, a group of home-based business owners, direct marketers and crafters get together for martinis at the American Legion in Milford, which founder Maureen Finnigan calls “amazing." It's a chance to meet others, share their products, and bring the community together. At the same time, the group collects items to donate to area charities. October’s collection for Safe Haven of Pike County coincided with national Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

Finnigan said the group, "Martinis and Manicures of Milford," has been going strong since last September, and the word is getting out. Although the group does no advertising, some meetings draw in 40 vendors.

How about the manicures?

Finnigan laughed. “Don’t read too much to the name,” she said.

She explained that when she first started, someone was providing manicures but had to stop for insurance reasons. But now available are Jamberry Nails — a kind of stick-on decoration for polished nails.

A recent evening event brought in a variety of items. Finnigan enumerated $68 cash; seven gift cards to Walmart, Turkey Hill and Rite Aid; and four large containers of products. Suggestions about to what to bring were given in the invitation on the group’s Facebook page, the only online media information it uses.

Finnigan herself is the owner of a home-based business called Magnolia and Vine, a snap jewelery and accessory line (with interchangeable parts).

During the events, six to eight door prizes are called hourly, and everybody has a chance to win. The vendors themselves have another, special entry tickets for within the group prices.

What the participants donate as prizes is up to them, Finnegan said.

The last event had Eleyna Levi, a physical therapist, giving massages for $1 per minute, photographer Bonny McCaffery taking free headshots, and Tarot card expert Roseanne Freeman reading fortunes. Other vendors put up activities for everyone to do.

Finnegan said the donations were delivered to Safe Haven the following Friday.

The next "Martinis and Manicures" meeting is Nov. 26, when the collection is for the local food pantry.

“We collect and deliver to the Chamber of Commerce now,” she explained. “It’s simpler.”

The mission of Safe Haven of Pike County "is to eradicate domestic violence, sexual assault and other serious crimes through prevention, empowerment and the promotion of social justice."



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