- "We are very excited," said loving mother Jodi Wood Tuesday afternoon as a fork lift moved a brand new playhouse into position.
"It's moving! It's moving!" exclaimed the very excited recipient, five-year-old Alonzo Wood.
The playhouse was custom built by Haviland Building and Remodeling and took home best in show at the Wayne County Builders Association Home and Garden Festival.
Laurie Lourie, CEO of the Wayne County Builders Association, said that the house that was voted best in show "would be presented to a local Make-a-Wish child." Alonzo was that child.
The playhouse features a slide and water guns mounted to the second floor with a hose directly feeding them. The structure also has a fireman's pole and two swings, one mounted on either side.
Wood said her son suffers from acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), and that he was "diagnosed just last year."
The disease is a type of cancer where the bone marrow makes too many immature lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell. ALL is the most common type of cancer that affects children and represents around one-third of all pediatric cancers. With advancements in treatment, the survival rate for ALL has reached 90 percent.
Wood says that Alonzo "takes chemotherapy orally every day," and makes the trek to the Geisinger Janet Weis Hospital in Danville to "receive chemotherapy intravenously once a month." He will continue his monthly treatments until June of 2015.
With this reduction in treatment, she says Alonzo will be able to attend kindergarten this coming fall.
Chances to win
The Wayne County Builders Association still has chances available to win the five remaining playhouses built by Cassel Construction, Duck Harbor Group, Forest Homes of Lake Wallenpaupack, J.R. Bea Construction and Wallenpaupack High School. The money raised from the raffle ticket sales will be donated to the Make-a-Wish Foundation of Greater Pennsylvania and Southern West Virginia. Tickets cost just $10 each or three for $25.
Raffle tickets are available for purchase at the following locations: Eastern Penn Supply Company in White Mills; Wayne Memorial Hospital; Eastern Propane in Hawley; Kiley Associates in Lakeville; Coutts Blueberry Farm Market in Lake Wallenpaupack; Bold Gold Media Group in Honesdale; Wayne Bank at the Honesdale and Hawley branches; Hamlin Dental Center on Route 191 and the Wayne County Builders Association, Lake Wallenpaupack. Tickets can also be purchased by contacting the Wayne County Builders Association at 570-226-4941 or at the Wayne County Fair from August 2-10. The winners of the playhouses will be drawn at the last day of the fair.