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SACRAMENTO — During California Nonprofits Day on June 5, Assemblymember Rudy Salas (D-Bakersfield) honored the Kings Lions Club as the 32nd Assembly District’s 2019 Nonprofit of the Year. The Kings Lions Club is an affiliate of Lions Clubs International, the largest service organization in the world with an association of over 1.4 million members in approximately 46,000 clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas around the world.

"We thought that was cool. We're really proud to be recognized for our work," Kings Lion Club member Ray Etchegoin told the Sentinel. 

"It's very exciting to get that award. We do all of this hard work for the community and give back as much as we can, so it's an honor. It's very nice," Kings Lions Second Vice President Martie Rodriguez told the Sentinel. 

Chartered in 2013, the Kings Lions Club has over 40 dedicated members from the Lemoore/ Hanford area. Last year they donated over $60,000 to the community and volunteered thousands of hours through various programs and service projects.

“The Kings Lions Club’s passion for service is inspiring and shines through in every member I meet. I am proud to recognize the Kings Lions Club for their dedication to improving lives in the Central Valley. I can always count on the Lions Club to lend a helping hand in our community,” said Assemblymember Salas. “We partner with them on a variety of events such as our annual Stuff the Bus event to provide young students with backpacks stuffed with school supplies and last year’s tree dedication ceremony for the Gold Star mothers and families. By working together we can create a positive impact in our community.”

Kings Lions Club proudly serves its local communities in Kings County and gives back in many different ways. Some of their ongoing projects include: Stuff the Bus School Supply Collection Project, Highway Clean up, West Hills Middle College High School Scholarships, Stratford Easter Egg Hunt, Movies with Santa/ Can Food Drive, and the Lions Student Speakers Scholarship.

“All of the members of the Kings Lions Club are extremely honored and humbled to be recognized by Assemblyman Rudy Salas as the Nonprofit of the Year for AD 32!” said Kings Lions Club member, Dr. Jeffrey Garcia. “Our sincere desire to serve our community is found in the heart of every one of our Kings Lions Club members, it is what draws us together to service here in Kings County and globally. We will continue to work diligently to help improve the quality of life of our neighbors in need.”

The Kings Lions Club will host its annual Kings Brewfest Fundraiser on Saturday, June 15 at the Kings Lions Complex in Lemoore. All of the proceeds will be donated to local communities.

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Each year, the Lions Club chooses a different cause to support with the Brewfest and this year, funds will benefit the Valley Children Hospital's pediatric cancer program. 

"We felt like this was a very important [cause] because many of our members wither know a person or have family members ourselves that know how it is and how scary it is to go through that," Rodriguez said. 

Etchegoin, the chairperson for the Brewfest, echoed that sentiment, adding that his eyes were opened recently when a representative from Valley Children's Hospital presented the Lions with pediatric cancer statistics during a recent district club meeting. 

"The numbers we saw of pediatric cancer in the Valley compared to other areas in the country just astounded us," he said. 

Tickets are on sale now. The $40 admission earns attendees access to beer tastings, food, games and a performance by the Valley Cats. It's recommended that those interested get tickets as soon as possible. 

"We release 1,650 tickets every year and every year we sell out," Etchegoin said. 

While all types and brands of beer will be represented, Etchegoin said that most attendees are interested in the local microbrews. The event will have many local suds available including those brewed by Hanford's Hop Forged Brewing Company, Lemoore's Bird Street Brewing and Tioga Sequoia Craft Brewey of Fresno, among many others. 

For more information or tickets, call 924-4417 or 707-5957. 

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