Sunday, March 28, 2010

How Your Dollars Make A Difference

With lower-than-average administrative and fundraising costs, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society is committed to ensuring the maximum amount of money raised funds groundbreaking research and provides direct services for people living with MS.

Every step you walk and every dollar you raise means increased awareness and more dollars for research, services and programs to help those facing the daily challenges of living with MS. The Society spends more money on MS research than any other voluntary health agency in the world, investing some $40 million annually on research programs. This includes more than 440 MS research investigations at the best medical centers, universities and other institutions throughout the United States and abroad. This investment is paying off in significant progress toward finding treatments and in better diagnosis, rehabilitation and symptomatic therapy for people with all forms of MS.

Walk MS participants and supporters significantly contribute to the many resources the National MS Society offers. It is because of your dedication that individuals affected by MS are able to receive the emotional, physical, financial and educational support they need.

Thank You!

"Captain Crunch"

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Pin-Ups Are Here!

Pin Up sales are a great way to increase visibility and boost your fundraising! Sell them for $1, $5, $10, or any donation amount you prefer. In turn, give your donor a signed shoe print to hang to increase awareness for multiple sclerosis! Take to your local grocery store, restaurant or just around your neighborhood to gain more support and increase your fundraising dollars!
If you would like some pin-up's to aid in your fundraising, email with your name and address and quantity you think you need.
Happy Fundraising,
"Captain Crunch"

101 Fundraising Ideas

CraniuMS has been working hard for almost two months now. Time to spice it up! If you think you've plateaued in your fundraising efforts, here are 101 new fundraising ideas!

1. House party – Invite friends and family to a party and ask for a donation. It’s a sure-fire
way to fundraise.
2. Corporate matching gift – Ask your company to match the amount of pledges you receive
from your fellow co-workers
3. Friends’ corporate matching gifts – Ask your friends if their companies will match their
4. Corporate sponsorship – Identify one or several large companies and contact them
directly. They may be willing to sponsor you completely.
5. Garage sale – Know all that stuff that’s been hanging out in your garage…in your attic…in
your basement? Gather it up and ask your friends to do the same. Put it in your front
yard and sell, sell, sell! Put all the money raised toward your minimum pledge.
6. Bake sale – Become Betty Crocker (and ask your friends to do the same) and host a bake sale. You can even have it in conjunction with your garage sale. It’s a fact that people will by
more stuff on an empty stomach.
7. Extra change box – Keep a little box on your dresser or nightstand and all your extra
change in it everyday. It adds up.
8. Everyone else’s extra change – Create little boxes for your friends and family to place on
their dressers or nightstands. At the end of the day, they can drop spare change in the
box. Put it on your desk at work and others will join in.
9. Office fundraising challenge – Challenge your coworkers. Who can raise the most
money? Give the winner a prize like movie passes or gift certificate for dinner.
10. Voicemail/answering machine message – Use your voicemail and answering machine to let everyone calls you that you’re up to something special and you need their support.
11. Return address labels – Print return address labels for your outgoing mail. Print
something like, “I’m participating in Walk MS—Will you sponsor me?” You may want to
include a pledge form and a self-addressed stamped envelope to make it really easy for
12. Online forums – Post a message to the online forums to which you belong. You’d be
amazed at how many people you don’t even know who will be willing to help you.
13. Personalize Your Walk MS web page – Create your own website about your journey.
Then, send an email to everyone on your contact list and invite them to visit the website.
You can do this by logging into your participant center from the Walk MS website.
14. A day’s tips – Ask your favorite bartender, waiter and waitress to donate a day’s tips (or
portion thereof) to your fundraising. Create a sign for the bartender to place on the bar
stating that “All tips collected tonight will go directly to “Your Name Here” who’s walking
raise money for multiple sclerosis.” If the patrons see the sign they may be willing to dip a
little deeper in their pockets.
15. Carry copies of your fundraising letter – Have them with you at all times and pass them along to people you meet. For example, if flying, pass the letter out to the flight crew.
People really do want to support you!
16. Donation jar at the cash register of a local favorite restaurant – Check with the restaurant manager. They may be willing to place the jar in a high traffic area so lots of patrons see it.
17. Fundraising dinner at your favorite restaurant – Ask your favorite restaurant to host a fundraising dinner for you. Many restaurants will donate back a portion of the proceeds
from a specific evening.
18. Autograph party – Invite all your friends (and their friends) and get them to sign your
Home Made Walker T-shirt. Charge $10 per signature.
19. Theme party or dinner – Hold a theme party for 10 (or more) of your friends. If each
person donates $50 and you spend no more than $20 per person on food and
decorations, you’ll have $300 (or more) in pledges by the end of the night.
20. Movie ticket donation – Ask your local movie house to donate several movie tickets. Sell
them and put the money towards your pledges.
21. At-home movie party – Pick up a favorite flick at your local movie store, make some
popcorn, pick up some soda and invite your friends and family over for movie night. Of
course have your pledge forms ready to go!
22. Ask a local theater to donate tickets to a performance – Ask a local theater to donate a couple of tickets to one of their plays or musicals and auction them off.
23. Birthday gift pledge – This is a very simple way to raise money and it will be a lot easier
for your friends and family to write you a check instead of spending hours trying to shop
for you.
24. Delegate – Give 10 of your friends 10 pledge forms each and ask them to help raise
money for you.
25. Creative friends – Find a local artist or ask a creative friend if he/she would donate a
piece of art or some jewelry that you can auction off.
26. House warming party – Are you moving soon? If so, ask your friends to make a pledge
instead of purchasing a gift for your new place.
27. Make it colorful – Print your fundraising letter and pledge form in color and mail them in
colored envelopes. They will stand out from bills and junk mail. Print up a Walk MS
sticker from your computer to add even more appeal.
28. Email signature – Insert a link to your Walk MS fundraising page in your email signature.
You will be surprised how many people will want to help.
29. Business cards – Print up some inexpensive business cards with your Walk MS
fundraising goal, as well as your name, address, email and the Walk MS online pledge
center address. Hand these out to everyone you meet.
30. Travel agency – Do you always make your travel plans through the same agency? Ask
them to donate a travel voucher. You can auction it off at your fundraising party.
31. Doctor – Ask him/her to make a check out for you instead of the other way around.
32. Dentist – Hopefully you won’t have to pull teeth to get him/her to help you out with your
33. Chiropractor – He’s cracked your back. Now ask him to crack open his checkbook and
make a pledge.
34. Yoga instructor – You’ve bent over backwards for her…now it’s her turn to do the same
for you!
35. Radio station – Call your favorite station and ask them to interview you on the air. They
may even put a link to the Walk MS website or your fundraising page on their website.
36. Gym – Ask your gym to place a Pledge Jar at the front desk! Leave a stack of pledge forms
at the counter, too!
37. Spin/exercise class – Have a stack of pledge forms with you and ask your instructor to
make an announcement in class.
38. Hair salon – Ask your barber or hairdresser to donate a percentage or set amount from
every haircut they complete over one weekend.
39. Picnics – Next time you are at a picnic, don’t forget to ask for pledges.
40. Mow-a-thon – Get your kids involved in fundraising! Ask around the neighborhood and
mow everyone’s lawn for a cause.
41. Neighbors – Write to all your neighbors on your block (or in your building) to let them
know you are participating in Walk MS and to ask for a donation.
42. Free rent – Ask your landlord to donate one month’s rent to the cause.
43. “Good Karma” tip jar – Ask local businesses to put one of those jars near the register or
on their front counter. Tape a picture of yourself on the jar and a short explanation of
why you are raising money.
44. “Gal” (or guy) Friday – Offer to be someone’s personal assistant for a day (or maybe a
few hours). In exchange for a large donation, you can drop off dry cleaning, make
appointments, research a vacation, cook dinner or do the grocery shopping.
45. Garden tour – Check with the local historical society to see if they would sponsor a
garden tour of one or several homes in your area. Promote the event in local newspapers.
46. Meet the press – Take advantage of all the newsletters you get: at work, church, school,
professional organizations, etc. Write an article about Walk MS and ask for pledges.
47. Baby sitting – Exchange your services for a pledge. You raise more money and your
friends have a night out without the kids. This is a great fundraiser for teenagers.
48. Pet sit – Are your neighbors going away and don’t want to leave “Spot” at the boarding
facility? Offer your services and charge what they would have spent on the kennel.
Walk MS – 101 Fundraising Ideas
49. House sit – Friends going out of town for a while? Maybe they need someone to bring in
the mail, water the plants and feed the pets – and will make a donation to your
fundraising to reward your efforts.
50. Neighborhood chores – Are you Mr. or Ms. Fix-it? A lot of your neighbors would
probably rather pay you than someone else. Place signs around your neighborhood
advertising your services (i.e. watering gardens, cleaning roof gutters, sweeping the
driveway, fixing an easy plumbing problem, painting a room, etc.).
51. Karaoke night – Who cares if you can’t carry a tune? Spend Friday night at a karaoke bar
and sing your guts out. Have the announcer tell the crowd that you’re singing for
52. Talented friends – Do you have little piano bar in your neighborhood and a talented
piano-playing friend? Have the announcer tell the crowd you’re singing for pledges.
53. – Remember the garage sale idea? How ‘bout rounding up the goods from your
friends and putting it all on to be auctioned off with proceeds benefiting your
Walk MS fundraising.
54. Company vacation days – Ask you boss or human resource director if they can swap one
of your vacation days for day’s pay.
55. Sell footprints – Contact us for some paper footprints to sell at your local business for $1
56. In honor/memory of – If you are walking in honor or memory of a loved one, include a
picture of you with your loved one in your pledge letter, on posters, etc.
57. Pledges for each mile of the walk – Ask people to pledge an amount for each mile of the
58. Pet birthday party – This may sound a little silly, but we love our pets. And they love
other people’s pets…even yours. Invite your friends to your pet’s birthday party (even if
it isn’t Fido’s birthday). Play up the theme and have a great time. Instead of birthday gifts
request a pledge.
59. Television show finale party – Is your favorite show going off the air or wrapping up for
the season? Gather a big group of friends to watch the big season or series finale. Of
course, charge ‘em at the door and put the money toward your pledges.
60. Game night – Get out those board games and start playing! Break into teams and let the
fun begin. Ask each player to pitch in $20 towards the cause before you start playing.
61. Host a poker night – Call your serious (or not so serious) card-playing’ friends and invite
them over for a poker night. Split each pot between your fundraising and the winner.
62. Bowling night – Plan a fun night of bowling at your local lanes. Ask your friends to
pledge a dollar a pin.
63. Used book sale – Everyone has books that have been sitting on shelves or in boxes
collecting dust. Gather your books and ask friends, family and neighbors to donate
whatever they’ve got. Set up a weekend book sale in your front yard. Put up some signs
so people will now where the money is going.
Walk MS – 101 Fundraising Ideas
64. Local stores – Ask a local store manager what the hot selling item is these days and then
ask then if they’d be willing to donate a percentage of the sales from that particular item
to your Walk MS fundraising.
65. Curse jar – C’mon, everyone does it. Now they have to pay for it. Place a “Curse Jar” in
your office, whenever someone says a bad word they have to put a dollar and put it in
the jar.
66. Dress down day – Ask your company to allow an official Walk MS Dress Down Day. For
the privilege of dressing down, employees pledge $5 or $10 toward Walk MS.
67. Company grants – Find out if your company offers grants to employees who volunteer
their time for charitable causes. If so, you can volunteer your time at the MS office and
get paid grant money (pledges!) You may need a letter from us stating that you’ll be
volunteering in the office and we’d be happy to make that happen.
68. Church bulletin – Place an advertisement in your church bulletin explaining why you are
raising money for the National MS Society and asking for support.
69. Is there a teacher in the house? – Get your students to help you fundraise. Kids are
incredibly creative and cute, too!
70. Other parents – If you kids play sports, distribute your pledge forms to the other parents
at the games.
71. Walk along – Ask a potential donor to walk along on one of your training walks. They
may be more willing to donate once they fully understand what you’ve committed to do.
72. Remind them – In case you didn’t receive an answer the first time you asked, ask again.
Your potential donor may need a little coaxing.
73. Inspirational book marks – Create then and sell to friends and family.
74. Universities and colleges – Contact your local schools and ask if you can put an
advertisement in their school paper. Some of the organizations may even invite you to
make a short presentation.
75. Running stores – Contact a couple of sporting goods stores. Tell them what you’re
training for and ask them if they would like to sponsor you.
76. Compute screen savers – Create a Walk MS Screen Saver and send it to everyone in your company. A gentle reminder is a good reminder!
77. Mechanic – You’ve given ‘em lots of money to work on your car. Now it’s time for them
to give a little back to you.
78. Rock on! – If you know any musicians, ask them to perform a benefit concert. Tell people
to make their admission check out to the National MS Society.
79. Share the Walk – Tell your story. The more you talk about your upcoming adventure, the
more people will want to share in that excitement with you (and pledge more).
80. Children’s party – Throw a party for the kiddos to give the parents an afternoon out – in
exchange for a Walk MS pledge, of course.
81. Wine and cheese party – Host a wine tasting or cocktail party (at home or at a local
restaurant). Ask everyone who attends to make a donation. The restaurant may even
donate refreshments or make a contribution.
82. Temporary tattoos – Swap a temporary tattoo for a pledge.
83. Do you have a favorite magazine? – Call the editor and ask them to sponsor you on the
Walk. If you’ve subscribed to a particular magazine for a long time they may be willing to
give you something back.
84. Fraternities and sororities – Contact the National Chapter of your college Fraternity or
Sorority and ask them to make a donation.
85. Alumni organization – Call you own college or university and ask them to place an ad in
the alumni newsletter asking for donations.
86. Ask for the right amount – Make sure you ask for the right amount. Don’t ask for $100 if you know someone can pledge $1,000.
87. Don’t make the decision for them – Don’t decide ahead of time that someone can’t afford to pledge. Ask them! You will be surprised.
88. Make your own contribution – Lead the way by making your pledge first.
89. Be a massage therapist for a day – For every contribution of $100 offer a massage to the donor.
90. Pizza party – Check out your local pizzeria. Most of them have great ways to help you
91. Clubs & organizations – Send a solicitation letter to your local Lions Club, Rotary Club,
Kiwanis Club, etc. They are known for support individuals in their community.
92. Raffle – Make or get a great prize donated – like a homemade quilt or season tickets to
the symphony – then enter everyone who makes a minimum pledge into a drawing for
the prize.
93. Shop at Wal-Mart – Some Wal-Marts have a Sunshine Fund to support individuals in
their community.
94. Contact your local paper and get an article – Make sure that you put information about how people can contribute. And have a photo ready to go,
95. Ask someone you don’t know for money.
96. Send updates on your fundraising and a reminder on how to support your efforts
97. Write to your local politicians
– You supported them. Don’t you think they should
support you?
98. Send a letter or email asking for a donation from everyone you know.
99. Don’t get discouraged.
100. Start NOW!
– The earlier you begin, the sooner you can reach – and even exceed – your
101. ASK! ASK! ASK! ASK! ASK! ASK! – And ASK again!

Happy Fundraising!
"Captain Crunch"

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Goal [gohl] -noun

What has CraniuMS been up to lately? It has been a busy week and yet CraniuMS is still hard at work trying to reach our goal of raising $10,000! We have but one week left of March. Will we make our goal to stay on track and raise $3100 in the month of March to bring our grand total to $8300? With just $640 left of making our March goal i think we are in a good position to succeed and exceed!

Since the members of CraniuMS have been working so hard in spreading the word against MS and recruiting support, i want to take a moment to congratulate those who are working hard to meet their individual goals and who are going above and beyond the call of duty!

Jonathan Stupsky: Goal $2000 - Achieved $1295
Megan Heuer: Goal $1000 - Achieved $1000
Sarah Postula: Goal $1000 - Achieved $888
Sally Woodward: Goal $800 - Achieved $835
Stacy Geyer: Goal $500 - Achieved $395
Bridget Heuer: Goal $500 - Achieved $385
Miranda Bailey-Quick: Goal $1000- Achieved $370
Lyndsay Bosley: Goal $500 - Achieved $355
Rocky Woodward: Goal $200 - Achieved $332
Moses Ancheta: Goal $200 - Achieved $300
Heather Heuer: Goal $500 - Achieved $295
Laura Hegeman: Goal $300 - Achieved $250
Danielle Stupsky: Goal $200 - Achieved $250
Sharon Stupsky: Goal $200 - Achieved $215
James Geyer: Goal $200 - Achieved $210
Joseph Stupsky: Goal $200 - Achieved $200
Misty Barbeaux: Goal $200 - Achieved $85
Cassie Fossitt: Goal $200 - Achieved $30
Janette Ellis: Goal $100
Michael Hunter: Goal $100
Katie Lee: Goal $200
Tracy Monson: Goal $200
Liz Rezac: Goal $200
Jared Stupsky: Goal $200
Ryan Stupsky: Goal $200
Patrick Vilson: Goal $200

Did you know that if each and every member of CraniuMS were to meet their own goal we would raise $11,100! Lets take a closer look at what a goal really is...

Goal [gohl] -noun: the result or achievement toward which effort is directed; aim; end.

According to the dictionary, CraniuMS has already met our goal. Our effort is to drive awareness and create a positive environment around which Multiple Sclerosis exists in everyday life. We aim to shed some light on this issue and encourage the same passion and encouragement in this fight against MS. Our end is to put an end to Multiple Sclerosis once and for all!

Be all that you can be!
"Captain Crunch"

Saturday, March 20, 2010

View From The Top

CraniuMS has reclaimed our #1 Top Team Fundraiser position! After being temporarily repositioned to #2 by Team Gillispie 10 "Revelation", the hard work of our fundraising efforts paid off this week earning us back the right to call ourselves #1! But lets face it, #2 is still worthy of being proud, or any other place for that matter as we have already proved that we are are force to be reckoned have the best supporters for this worthwhile cause! Still unbelievably impressive for a small group of people and our family and friends to have made a name for ourselves at an event such as the MS Walk across the Twin Cities! To put it into perspective just how awesome we are, lets learn a little more about Team Gillispie 10 "Revelation" to see just how honored we are to even be considered in the ranks of their company.

The first Team Gillispie walk started in 2000. They had 6 people and raised $6,000! Over the last 9 years, Team Gillispie has expanded. To date, they have raised $650,000 and this year they have 11 events in 5 states. At the end of last year they set a goal of $350,000 for this year so their 9 year total would top $1,000,000! One Million Dollars!

Does that story sound familiar? CraniuMS is in our 2nd year of participating in the MS Walk. During our first year we had 7 people and raised $1800. This year with still over a month to go we have 26 people and have raised $7510! We are well onto our way of meeting, and most likely exceeding, our goal of $10,000! And it could not be possible without the hard work of our team and our generous supporters.

We are at the start of our existence in this journey against MS. I can only hope that 8 years from now we too can say we are approaching raising $1,000,000 for the National MS Society. I think of what the next 8 years may bring. Will they find a cure? Will there be better medication? Will we one day support this cause because we fought it head on and won? Again, it reminds me of what this means for the people affected by MS, and that is the hope it brings for a better tomorrow.

One Million Or Bust!
"Captain Crunch"

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Luck Of The Irish

Happy St. Patrick's Day! We're ditching the orange for a day and sporting our sister color green :) CraniuMS has stumbled upon a pot-o-gold for MS thanks to leprechauns just like you.

In honor of St. Patrick's Day the National MS Society is sponsoring another contest! Raise $200 in confirmed online donations between today and noon on March 26th and your name will be entered into a drawing to win a $100 Visa Gift Card and exclusive MS jewelry from Christopher and Banks.

Thinking about St. Patrick's Day and images of little green leprechauns with rainbows and pot-o-golds reminds me of the struggles of being affected by MS and what CraniuMS is striving to accomplish. Rainbows wouldn't exist without first having a little rain, and it is symbolic of finding the positive in every situation. CraniuMS continues to seek out the positive every single day and is casting a rainbow as far as the eye can see!

Good Luck CraniuMS!

"Captain Crunch"

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

71% closer!

CraniuMS continues to surprise me each and every day! Today we surpassed $7,000 and have raised a total of $7182!!!! There really isn't much i can say that can express the warmth and gratitude i feel for the outstanding progress of our team! I've instead chosen to showcase one of my favorite commercials from BCBS of Minnesota. Do the "Do Dance" and celebrate our progress!

"Captain Crunch"

Monday, March 15, 2010

Dust off them sneakers!

We've dug out our walking shoes from the winter storage closet and wiped the cobwebs off in preparation for the MS Walk! With the last bit of snow melting and temperatures topping out at about 60 the last two days, all anyone can think is SPRING SPRING SPRING!! It is a reminder that the walk is approaching fast and our winter days are soon behind us.

With the help of CraniuMS we can someday say that MS is soon behind us :) Our fundraising campaign for this years MS Walk is going strong and at $6920 we will no doubt reach our March goal of $8100! With the time change and this long awaited sunshine and warmth upon us, what better way to raise some money than to start your spring cleaning and hold a garage sale! Let your creative side loose and make some signs saying proceeds benefit the National MS Society and set out a donation tin! You'll be surprised how much you can raise. What better way to get rid of your old sneakers and help CraniuMS! Tell your friends and family about your garage sale fundraiser and recruit their help.

Go get outside, stretch out those hammies, and walk for a cure!
"Captain Crunch"

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Springing Forward!

The end up MS Awareness Week has come upon us, and a successful one it was! CraniuMS was able to raise an additional $595 bringing our grand total to $6920! Good job to everyone for raising awareness and to our MS Awareness Week All Stars:

Because they all worked so hard this week, every one of our MS Awareness Week All Stars will receive an official National MS Society eco friendly bag sponsored by CraniuMS! Congratulations to our grand prize winner Jonathan Stupsky for raising the most money this week. Jonathan will receive an official National MS Society latte style mug!
We also have some National MS Society sponsored contest winners as well! Jonathan Stupsky, Sarah Postula and Laura Hegeman all qualified to win a free bowl of Noodles, Soup or Salad from Noodles & Company!

The real winners are all the families out there living with and affected by multiple sclerosis. Together we are moving towards a cure. Speaking of movement, did you remember to "Spring Forward" today?
Keep S'myelin!
"Captain Crunch"

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Get the FAQ's!

This week is all about awareness. What better way to educate our audience than spreading a few quick FAQ's! Below are some common questions and answers as it relates to MS:

What is MS? MS is a chronic, unpredictable disease of the central nervous system that is thought to be an autoimmune disorder in which the myelin sheath that protects our nerves is damaged, disrupting the signal to the brain. Refer to our Fun Fact blog to watch a short video that clearly explains MS!

Who gets MS? Anyone may develop MS but there are some patterns. More than twice as many women as men have MS. Studies suggest that genetics can make individuals more susceptible than others, but there is no evidence that MS is directly inherited. Most people are diagnosed between 20-50 years old.

How many people have MS? 400,000 Americans have MS, and every week 200 more are diagnosed. 2.5 million people are affected worldwide.

What are the typical symptoms of MS? Symptoms are very unpredictable and are unique for each person and can vary from time to time in the same person. One person may experience abnormal fatigue and have episodes of numbness and tingling while another could have loss of balance and muscle coordination that can make walking difficult. Another person may have slurred speech, tremors, stiffness, and bladder problems. Symptoms may come and go.

Is MS fatal? Most people with MS have a normal or near-normal life expectancy.

Does MS always cause paralysis? No. The majority of people with MS do not become severely disabled. 2/3 of people with MS remain able to walk, though some will need an aid.

Can MS be cured? CraniuMS is working extremely hard to help fund a cure. As of yet there is no cure, but disease modifying drugs are available that may help slow down the course of MS and manage symptoms.

Keep working hard and get the word out! We have just three days remaining for MS Awareness Week! Congrats to our MSAW All-Stars for the donations they have collected so far this week!

"Captain Crunch"

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Dollars & Sense

Happy Wednesday!

Today's team contest: Recruit at least three team members today and your team name goes into a drawing to win three gift certificates for one free hour of bowling, free pizza and pop at Treasure Island Resort and Casino.

Today’s individual contest: Send the most e-mails using your Participant Center and win a long-sleeved MS shirt.

Here's something you might not have been aware of! Every hour someone is diagnosed with MS. In the past seven days alone, 200 people have been diagnosed in the United States. For these people who are newly diagnosed and the hundreds of thousands of people already diagnosed, there is no cure, but there is hope because of committed supporters such as CraniuMS and our fundraising efforts as we prepare to Walk for MS. Research is progressing at an astounding rate and your dollar counts!

CraniuMS has raised $6690 so far. $345 of that has been raised this week alone during MS Awareness Week. Our fundraising dollars make an incredible difference for families living with MS. Here is just a sampling of how your donation has made a difference so far:
  • $25 can provide Yoga and exercise instruction or other materials to people with MS through our Lending Library.
  • $50 can provide transportation to an MS education program for someone with no means to get there.
  • $200 can pay for an occupational therapy home assessment for someone who is having difficulties with daily tasks around the house.
  • $300 can maintain the operation of an MS self-help group for an entire year.
  • $400 can pay for a driving assessment for someone who needs vehicle modifications in order to remain independent in their community.
  • $500 can help pay the rent for a family affected by MS that is struggling to pay medical bills and other expenses.
  • $750 can help people with MS pay for chore services to help with tasks they can no longer handle because of the disease — like shoveling the driveway or meal preparation.
  • $2,000 can provide a scholarship to help a young person affected by MS pursue a college education.

I like to think that last bullet will fund the education of the future neurologist who finds a cure! Don't forget to share with us how you are Moving It for MS Awareness Week! Check out this picture courtesy of Tracy Bohm who Moved It by spray painting a snow bank!

Keep up the great work CraniuMS MS Awareness Week All-Stars!
Jonathan Stupsky $250
Sarah Postula $85
Miranda Bailey-Quick $20
Sharon Stupsky $10

"Captain Crunch"

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Move It!

We're in day two of MS Awareness week and another contest sponsored by the MS Society is underway. Raise the most in online donations today and win a MS Society baseball cap! Jonathan Stupsky & Sarah Postula have already met the week long challenge of raising $50 or more and have won a free bowl of noodles, soup or salad at Noodles & Company! Their MS Awareness have brought our team total to $6660!

In the spirit of competition for a good cause, CraniuMS is sponsoring a few of our own contests this week for our members! Stay tuned for more chances to win all week!

Raise the most money for CraniuMS this week and win an official National MS Society latte style mug!

Raise over $100 this week and automatically win an official National MS Society eco friendly bag!

This week in honor of MS Awareness Week photograph yourself wearing orange and email to share how you are moving it for Multiple Sclerosis on the CraniuMS blog. Get creative and set a bowl of oranges out to share with your coworkers, steal an orange road cone (kidding!), paint the MS logo on a terracotta plant holder. Be original and have fun. This week is all about spreading awareness and moving it!
Give a big CraniuMS clap for our MS Awareness Week All-Stars
Get out there and Move It!
"Captain Crunch"

Monday, March 8, 2010

Happy MS Awareness Week!

MS Awareness Week is finally here! Lets do our best to push for awareness and utilize this awareness to keep working towards our goal of raising $10,000 for the Walk MS: Twin Cities Walk 2010! Today is not only the beginning of MS Awareness Week, but also the start of the second official Walk MS Team Week. In the first Walk MS Team Week this year CraniuMS worked up a sweat to rise to the challenges. We recruited 18 team members that week and started out strong raising $1000! With the formulation of our team we are now at 26 members and $6325.11. This is an amazing accomplishment for a small group of people who are only on their second year participating in the MS Walk who set out with a common interest because we are all connected to MS somehow.
The National MS Society has some fun contests and prizes in store for us this week!
Team Contests:
  • Today's contest: The first team to double in size (throughout the week) wins four free tickets to a St. Paul Saints game.
  • Week long contest: The team with the greatest percentage increase in team size wins a team tent or team reception area on event day, May 2

Individual Contests:

  • Today's contest: Raise $25 online today and you'll be entered into a drawing to win an MS Society Hooded Sweatshirt
  • Week long contest: Raise $50 or more online between now and noon this Friday and you win a free bowl of noodles, soup or salad at Noodles & Company (coupons limited)!

Keep following us all week long for all the chances you have to win! Sponsor a member of CraniuMS today to help us win as we work hard to reach our goal and raise awareness for MS! Want to join CraniuMS? Remember, if you are unable to attend the actual walk event on May 2nd you can still be a big part of our team and help us raise money. All new team members will receive an orange silicone MS Movement bracelet! Email if you have any questions how you can join the movement and either join our team or sponsor one of our amazing members!

On a separate note, CraniuMS has yet again proven that any act, big or small, can make a difference in our campaign which in turn ultimately makes a huge difference in the lives of those affected with MS. When I started our blog i had intentions of keeping the team updated on what is going on, ways to fundraise and encourage our members to keep pushing towards our goal. As an overwhelming show of support came in from all of our individual sponsors, it slowly evolved into a way to keep everyone updated on our progress and a way to create awareness for MS and show the reasoning behind all of this. What makes CraniuMS special is that we're new at this and we're finding our way the best we know how, much like someone who has been newly diagnosed with MS or the support network surrounding them. CraniuMS is really a network of friends and family spread throughout the Midwest, with the majority of our team residing in Michigan. Over half of our members come from a small town in Michigan of not even 1,000 residents. Growing up in this small town the involvement of community was a huge part of what formed us as adults, and a major part of what has made CraniuMS successful thus far. We are a community of MS supporters who have learned along the way that we can all make a difference, and that no matter what we do, big or small, it helps paint a bigger picture. CraniuMS helps take care of their own and everyone else who is in the fight against MS!

I am proud to say that through one small action of copying our blog address to the bottom of my email, it has been published in the National MS Society newsletter that goes out if you are a subscriber via email. Just this one action and our blog fell into the hands of Kris Van Osnabrugge, who is part of the staff for the National MS Society! Thank you Kris for supporting us and helping us spread the word about our blog and CraniuMS and the amazing MS Walk event!

We have an exciting week ahead of us and i don't want to spoil all the surprises today! Check back in tomorrow to see what other contests the National MS Society has in store for us as well as some contests that CraniuMS has put together! As someone who has been deeply affected by MS, my heart and soul goes out with an abundance of thanks for all who support us. We woke up today with a pep in our step over the excitement of it being MS Awareness week. It all circles back to what this all means beyond the monetary value, and that is the control it gives us in feeling like we have the power to do all we can to fight this and wake up each day with hope in our hearts and friends in our arms.

Thank you CraniuMS, our supporters, and Kris for making my day! I already can't wait for tomorrow!

"Captain Crunch"

Sunday, March 7, 2010

What A Week!

CraniuMS is right on track to our goal of raising $10,000! We've ended the first week of March by raising an additional $1100 bringing our grand total to $6300.11!!! At this pace i have no doubt that we will achieve our March goal of $3100! My hope in projection of making our final goal is to end March at $8300. With 3 weeks left and an exciting week of MS Awareness ahead of us it's going to no doubt be a blast watching us come together as one to make our goal achievable!

With tomorrow being the start of MS Awareness Week i have found this fun site where you can make your mark against MS and share your story. Visit and make your mark to share with the world! CraniuMS is continuing to make not only a mark, but a permanent stance against MS!

Here is the fun mark I made!

Get a good night's rest tonight, tomorrow starts the beginning of another big week!

"Captain Crunch"

Friday, March 5, 2010

What Moves You? Video Contest

Move It for MS Awareness Week! Move It is all about moving the message forward. What Moves You? Video Contest is your chance to share your reasons for supporting the National MS Society and to encourage others to join you.

Creating Your Video
  • Videos should be 2 minutes maximum.
  • The style and content are completely up to you. Some ideas to get you thinking:
    How you live with multiple sclerosis. How you’ve joined the movement to create a world free of MS. Informing others about MS. How the MS Society has helped you. Inspiring others to get involved.

Selecting the Winners

  • Most Views – The winner will be chosen based on number of “views” on YouTube between the time of submission and March 31, 2010. If you spread the word and get the most people to watch your video, you win!
  • Chairman’s Choice – The winner will be chosen from the top 10 finalists for most viewed videos. Chairman of the Board for the Michigan Chapter, Dean Munger, will select a winner based on creativity, mission focus, and accuracy of information.
  • Winners will be announced on April 5, 2010.

The Prize

  • Both winners will receive an orange MS Society duffle bag filled with MS Awareness goodies! Winners will also be featured on the Michigan Chapter website and Facebook pages.

Entry Guidelines
Between March 8 and Midnight March 21, 2010, complete the following steps to submit your video:

  1. Read the contest information completely.
  2. Visit and log on to create a free account. Upload an original video created by you.
  3. Return to this page and complete the online entry form including the link to the video posted on YouTube.
  • All video entries submitted must be no larger than 320 x 240 pixels
  • Must not exceed two minutes in length.
  • Must be in a format acceptable by YouTube (acceptable formats can be found here:
    The National MS Society, Michigan Chapter reserves the right to reject any entry, in their sole discretion.
  • YouTube views will be counted between the time of submission and March 31, 2010.
    The Contest Details
  • If you have any questions, comments, or concerns please email

Take some time over the weekend to think about what moves you and why you support CraniuMS. If you wish to participate, email your YouTube link to publish on our blog so that our fellow CraniuMS supporters can view the video and give you a chance to win! Stay tuned for a special video from yours truley, "Captain Crunch"!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Digital Downloads

A few simple steps (no pun intended) is all it takes to join the movement. During MS Awareness Week you can change your Facebook profile picture to the Move It icon, change your email signature and link back to CraniuMS or change your desktop wallpaper! It is a combination of these little things that turn into one big thing, which is the driving force behind what makes CraniuMS so successful as a team in raising support for Multiple Sclerosis.

Profile Badges: (Right-click picture and choose "Save Picture As" to post as your Facebook profile picture)

Wallpaper: (Click to enlarge and right click to set as desktop wallpaper)

These are just a few of the digital tools we can use to Move It in support of CraniuMS and Multiple Sclerosis. To view the full list of digital downloads available from the National MS Society visit this link! Taking these few small steps can peak interest for others to get involved. Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.
No one can whistle a symphony. It takes an orchestra to play it.

"Captain Crunch"

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

6,030 Congrats!

Is your cup half full or half empty, because CraniuMS' cup is overflowing! Today we have 6,030 reasons to clink our cups together with thanks and cheers! To wake up everyday and see us inch closer and closer to our goal fills my cup with overwhelming hope for the future and love for today.

In celebration of how far we have come CraniuMS has won a party pack from the National MS Society full of fun prizes that will make our team stand out from the crowd come walk day. If we hit our goal of $10,000 CraniuMS will get our own team sign that will be displayed at the walk and an invitation to the Sylvies, which is a dinner and awards show in honor of the National MS Society founder Sylvia Lawry!

In other news of celebration, lets give a mighty CraniuMS clap to Jonathan Stupsky who has raised $1,000!!! Jon has won an official National MS Society hooded sweatshirt that he can wear as a simple way to generate awareness!

Congratulations to all of CraniuMS for their hard work and achieving yet another milestone and raising $6030! You and me together, we can do anything!

Optimistically Yours,
"Captain Crunch"

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Follow CraniuMS!

We're just 5 days away from MS Awareness week! Want to know a simple and quick way you can help CraniuMS prepare to spread the word and bring out awareness of Multiple Sclerosis and help our cause as we approach our MS Walk? Become a follower of our blog and encourage your friends and family to follow our journey and join the movement too! Currently CraniuMS is in communication to get our blog published, which not only would help us in our mission to create awareness and support, but this would also help us substantially as we continue on our fundraising challenge. If you check in on us daily to see our progress and support us then help prove our readership!

Following us is easy. Just scroll down the page on our right sidebar and look for the "Follow" button. If you already have an existing google, yahoo or twitter account you can log in and become a follower in a few simple steps. If not, it just takes a minute to create one.

CraniuMS is creating a community of supporters. Today this community has helped us raise $5920!!! Thanks for letting us into your lives everyday!

"Captain Crunch"

Monday, March 1, 2010

March Madness

Happy March! I can barely wait for what is in store for us this month. Besides St. Patrick's Day, the first day of Spring and Daylight Savings, March 8-14th is MS Awareness Week!!! Not only does the National MS Society bring a load of excitement to the table during this week of awareness, but CraniuMS has a few tricks waiting up our sleeves. Keep following us to find out how you can join the movement and "Move It" during MS Awareness week and get the chance to win all sorts of prizes with your efforts. We promise not to disappoint this month!

The start of a new month brings a whole new set of challenges. To help in reaching our goal and with just two more months left of our campaign, CraniuMS should raise an additional $3100 to stay on track, which is 1/3 of our total goal. I know we can keep up the pace, and with such an exciting month in store for us i know that our supporters will challenge themselves to reach out on our behalf. Spread the word. A new player for Multiple Sclerosis is in town and goes by the name of CraniuMS!

Enjoy the below video and let it serve as a reminder of what CraniuMS really stands for as we put one foot forward into the new month.

Keep Marching on,
"Captain Crunch"