Published Date Written by Roger AmsdenLACONIA — When Ron Boucher of Gilford, an organizer and sponsor of the King of Pubs Eight Ball Tournament, presented a check for $436 to Jaye Olmstead of David's House in Lebanon last Saturday he said that it had a special significance for him.
''We were there in 1999. My daughter Tamara was being treated for leukemia at the Children's Hospital and having that place for us to stay at was a godsend,'' says Boucher, owner of Foosball Sports Vending and the publisher of Tavern Players magazine.
Today, his daughter is 27 years old, living in Tuscson, Arizona ''and is healthy and pregnant'' with a baby due in early June.
''David's House was great and I'm glad there's a way we can help support its' work,'' said Boucher. He says that this is the fourth year that the tournament, which is held at 10 locations around the state over a 15-week time frame, has donated funds to David's House.
During that time the tournament has donated over $5,000 to its chosen cause.
And Saturday's donation was even larger than the amount written on the oversized check. ''We raised another $200 from Christmas Island and Tavern Players'' says Boucher.
Tournament sites in addition to Christmas Island include Heat at Weirs Beach, Common Man restaurants in Ashland and Windham, the Whittier House in Ossipee, Shooter's Tavern in Belmont, Above the Notch in Franconia, Truante's Tavern in North Woodstock, Woodpecker's Grill in Campton and Walter's Basin in Holderness.
Boucher said the next round of competition gets underway January 25 at Christmas Island and that the finals will be held at Truante's Tavern in May.
He said that sponsors like Amoskeag Beverages and Dunkin' Donuts help make the tournament possible.
''I can't tell you how grateful we are for this kind of support,'' says Jaye Olmstead, development director at David's House, which serves families whose children are being treated at the Children's Hospital at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center.
During the 27 years since it opened David's House has served over 12,000 families, including 650 from Belknap County, 557 from Grafton, County and another 1,099 from Merrimack County.
But over the last five years it has had to turn away 900 families for lack of space says Olmstead.
Work is currently underway on a 3,615 square foot cottage-style addition, with 4 bedrooms, says Olmstead. The $1 million addition is part of a $4 million capital campaign that includes $1.25 million for endowment and $1.75 million for two years of operating support and contingencies.
A $436 donation to David's House in Lebanon, which serves families of children undergoing cancer treatments at the Children's Hospital at Dartmouth Hitchcock, was made at the King of Pubs Eight Ball tournament at Christmas Island. Shown are, front row, Dustin Moriarty, tournament executive director; Jaye Olmstead of David's House; Ron Boucher of Foosball Sports Vending and Tavern Players magazine, a tournament sponsor; Wendy Hanley, Christmas Island owner; second row; Dean Rogers of Woodpecker's Grill in Campton; Jeremy Bean of Above the Notch in Franconia; Jim Krampitz of Walter's Basin in Holderness; Charles Randall of the Common Man in Windham; Don Dube of Christmas Island and Ted Krampitz of the Common Man in Ashland. The King of Pubs tournament has contributed more than $5,000 to David's House, which is undergoing a major expansion so that it can serve more families. (Roger Amsden/for The Laconia Daily Sun)