Cambria Somerset Heart Ball

With the theme of Heart & Soul, organizers of this year’s Cambria Somerset Heart Ball hope to raise $100,000 for the American Heart Association.

Brooke Greybush, development director for Blair, Cambria, Centre and Somerset counties, says the funds go to education, community outreach and research. “For nearly a century, the AHA has funded scientific research which has brought the results of discoveries like the first implantable pacemakers, the first artificial heart valve, CPR techniques and cholesterol-lowering medications,” Greybush says.

“Locally, we have rewarded hospitals for their accomplishments in our Get with the Guidelines programs, trained individuals in CPR and our healthy lifestyles programs, and advocated against vaping and to pass Senate Bill 115 that requires high-school students to learn Hands-Only CPR as a graduation requirement. Also, Windber Elementary School was a recipient of our Teaching Garden program.”

The Heart Ball takes place Feb. 22 at Sunnehanna Country Club in Westmont. Cocktail hour begins at 6 p.m. Dinner will feature American Heart Association recipes as well as a dessert bar.

As in years past, the black-tie event includes guest speakers, a silent and live auctions and dancing. This year, music is being provided by Rudy and the Professionals.

Craig Smith, recipient of a heart transplant due to viral cardiomyopathy in 2015, will be the featured survivor at the gala. “He was only in his late twenties when he received the transplant,” Greybush says. “Today he is doing well.”

This year’s Heart Hall of Fame honoree is Dr. Carl W. Konvolinka.

The 2020 chair is Andrew Rush, president of UPMC Somerset. Auction chair is Kailey Verbickey, who is Miss Pennsylvania 2016 and a recent nursing school graduate.

Greybush says the mission of the American Heart Association is “to be a relentless force for a world of longer, healther lives.”

For tickets or more information, call (717) 730-1739 or go online at

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