News & Events

Support COBYS November 16 through the ExtraOrdinary Give

November 16 is shaping up to be another extraordinary day.

COBYS will participate with nearly 500 other nonprofits on Friday, November 16, in the 2018 edition of the Lancaster County Community Foundation’s ExtraOrdinary Give–Lancaster County’s largest day of giving. In just six days of giving, the Extraordinary Give has raised more than $31 million for more than 500 organizations, including $8.6 million last year. During that same span COBYS has received $289,090, including more than $68,000 last year.

The logistics are the same as previous years. With credit card in hand, donors simply need to visit between 12:00 midnight and 11:59 p.m. on Friday, November 16, choose COBYS from the list of organizations, and give a donation of $25 or more. Gifts must be by credit card through the website.

Every dollar donated will be stretched with at least $500,000 from the Community Foundation, Rodgers & Associates, The S. Dale High Family Foundation, and other community partners. The more COBYS donors give, the greater our portion of the stretch fund.

On top of the stretch, an additional $50,000 will be awarded in prizes. During certain time periods, individual donations will be randomly selected. If a COBYS donor is chosen, the foundation will add $750 to that donation.

COBYS again is seeking friends to give at the stroke of midnight to earn one of the $750 Early Bird prizes offered to the first 10 organizations to reach 75 unique donors. Planners have upped the ante this year, requiring 75 donations, instead of 50, so we are looking for additional people who will lose sleep for a good cause. (A unique gift is one person giving with one credit card. A couple can give two unique gifts if they use two different credit cards.)

New this year is an opportunity for you to invite your friends to support COBYS and other favorite organizations through a Peer-to-Peer fundraising option. Just visit the COBYS profile at and click the “Fundraise” button.

COBYS will co-host two giving stations during the day, where donors can stop in to give in person. Give to any organization at one of our giving stations and receive a COBYS tote bag and a sweet treat as our tokens of thanks.

From 8:00 to 10:30 a.m. Executive Director Mark Cunningham and incoming Director of Development Anne Stokes will be at Lampeter Cafe (1702 Lampeter Rd.). The treat is an apple cider donut, compliments of the Cafe.

From 11 am to 1:30 p.m. Mark, Anne, and outgoing Director of Development Don Fitzkee will co-host a giving station at Brethren Village. Stop in at the lobby at Chives American Grill (Fieldcrest C) to donate and receive a whoopie pie, courtesy of Zig’s Bakery & Cafe. Computers will be set up and staff from COBYS and Brethren Village will be available to assist. If you already gave, feel free to stop in at either location just to say hello and pick up your thank you gifts.

To learn more about the ExtraOrdinary Give, visit or contact COBYS Director of Development Anne Stokes at

Rain Dampens Bodies, but Not Spirit at Record-Setting Bike & Hike

Despite steady rain that cancelled portions of the 22nd annual COBYS Bike & Hike, Sunday, September 9, was a bright day for COBYS Family Services.

More than 200 supporters walked three miles through the streets of Lititz in a steady downpour. The route was revised to avoid a soggy Lititz Springs Park. By the end of the day donors had established a new income record of more than $142,000 for COBYS ministries. The figure is an increase of more than $5,000  from last year and may still grow.

“We knew the weather would impact attendance,” said COBYS Director of Development Don Fitzkee, “but we weren’t sure about income. We were thrilled that people gave so generously. It was a great day!”

The increase in income marked the 20th consecutive year of growth for COBYS’ signature fundraiser. Since its inception, the Bike & Hike has raised more than $1.4 million for COBYS ministries.

In addition to the walk, the event usually includes two bicycle rides and a motorcycle ride, all staged from the pavilion at the Lititz Church of the Brethren. The rides were cancelled due to a flood advisory, and the event was moved inside to the church fellowship hall.

“We were really grateful that the church could accommodate us inside on short notice,” said Fitzkee. “It made for a much more pleasant afternoon.”

A number of would-be riders walked instead, or came to donate and pick up a t-shirt. In addition to 210 walkers, many others stopped in for fellowship, ice cream, or to bid on the Silent Auction that ran throughout the afternoon. Total attendance was estimated at 350, down from 601 people who walked or rode last year.

Taking the weather in stride, planners jokingly changed the event name to “COBYS Soak & Hike” and Fitzkee encouraged participants to “make memories” as they trudged through puddles. He later joked that although participation was down, the event established a new “indoor attendance record.”

Keith & Lisa Reinhart, owners of the Lampeter Café, cheered bedraggled walkers by setting up an impromptu coffee and hot chocolate station. (Someone suggested that serving hot drinks was their excuse to not have to walk in the rain, and Keith did not deny it.)

Contributing to the day’s success was record business support. More than 100 businesses provided cash or in kind donations of auction items, door prizes, or food and supplies. Cash sponsorships from businesses exceeded the last year’s amount by $11,000 and the previous best by $6,000. The auction generated $4,921, nearly $1,000 more than last year. Bringing top price at $440 was a custom Philadelphia Eagles-themed cornhole game made by Craig Snyder and donated by Galen & Nancy Shenk.

Participants pay a registration fee and/or raise money from sponsors. Mari Cunningham established a new individual fundraising record with total pledges of $12,525. Other top fundraisers were Floy Fitzkee, $6,685; Londa Brandt, $5,810; and Lucy de Perrot, $3,900.

Four Church of the Brethren youth groups earned gym and pizza nights by raising at least $1,500. They were: Little Swatara, $10,462; Mohrsville, $5,031; Mountville, $1,972; and West Green Tree, $1,556.

At the end of the day Fitzkee thanked the crowd for their friendship and support during his 17 years as Director of Development, acknowledging that he recently had announced his resignation and would not be handing out door prizes next year. The crowd expressed appreciation for his service with a standing ovation.

Photos from the event can be viewed on our Facebook page.

Haven’t paid your Bike & Hike pledge yet? Go here.

COBYS is grateful to additional sponsors who helped make Bike & Hike a success. Click here to view a full list.


Special Thanks to Our Business Sponsors
































Balsbaugh Insurance Agency
Ebersole Brothers Construction, Inc.
ELA Group, Inc.
Engle Printing & Publishing Company
Four Seasons Produce
Homestead Nutrition, Inc.
J.B. Zimmerman
Keller Brothers Auto Company
Lancaster Salvage
Longenecker’s True Value & Appliances
The Country Store, LLC
Unruh Insurance Agency, Inc.
Wenger & Company PC

Grand Prize Donors
Bob Neff Tours, Inc.
Giant Food Stores
Sight & Sound Theatres

Lititz Church of the Brethren

Crystal Springs Water Company
Garman Builders
Hess Brothers Fruit Company
John Herr’s Village Market
Keystone Pretzels
Smith’s Candies

Silent Auction Donors
Blatt’s Service & Fabrication
Blue Ridge Communications
Body & Soul Reflexology
Cindy Umberger
Cocalico Automotive, Inc.
Don & Carolyn Fitzkee
DoubleTree Resort by Hilton Lancaster
Dutch Apple Dinner Theatre
Esbenshade’s Garden Centers
Fillmore Container
Fox Meadows Creamery & Country Market
Foxchase Golf Club & Banquet Facility
Galen & Nancy Shenk
Go N Bananas
Good’s Store
Henry Faus
The Hershey Story
James & Pamela Ament
James Wenger
Jean Leininger
Keller Brothers Auto Company
Mark & Mari Cunningham
McElroy Pharmacy
Merv & Bonnie Wampler
Morr Indoor Range & Training Center
Outback Toys
Primitives by Kathy
S. Clyde Weaver
Shuey’s Pretzels
Smith’s Candies
Wenger Foundation, Inc.
Wilbur & Judy Rohrer

Door Prizes
Blue Ridge Communications
Choo Choo Barn
Cocalico Automotive, Inc.
Country Barn
Esbenshade’s Garden Centers
Goodville Mutual Casualty Company
Home Depot
Kauffman’s Bar-B-Q Restaurant
Keller Brothers Auto Company
Landis Valley Associates
Oregon Dairy
Peaceful Valley Furniture
Refreshing Mountain Retreat & Adventure Center
Reist Popcorn Company
Rocky Springs Entertainment Center
Shuey’s Pretzels
Smith’s Candies
Stauffers of Kissel Hill
Tangles Salon
Umberger’s of Fontana
Village Greens Golf, Inc.
Zig’s Bakery & Café