This week, staff writer Kyle Bravin talks with Pauline Makowski about Breathe Deep NEPA’s Dine for a Cure Spaghetti Dinner, which benefits the Lungevity Foundation and its fight against lung cancer.

Residence: Kingston

Education: Bachelor’s degree in fine arts from Wilkes University

Title: Breathe Deep NEPA event coordinator


Q: Tell us about Breathe Deep NEPA.

A: Breathe Deep NEPA is a local grassroots fundraising committee serving Northeast Pennsylvania. Our mission is to fundraise and raise awareness regarding lung cancer. We host numerous events throughout the year in the area, and proceeds benefit the national nonprofit, the Lungevity Foundation. It is dedicated to lung cancer research, education and caregiver advocacy. The largest event we host each year is our annual 5K walk/fun run, which we began 10 years ago in memory of my late husband, Allan Makowski Sr. He passed away from stage IV lung cancer in 2009. The spaghetti dinner’s proceeds will go to our overall fundraising goal, which will culminate with donations received from the walk/fun run in November.

Q: What was your inspiration?

A: All of Breathe Deep NEPA’s events are truly inspired by the fight to cure not only lung cancer but all cancers. This event is a fundraiser to raise awareness and bring people together for a tasty meal.

Q: What is on the event’s menu?

A: The menu will be a traditional spaghetti dinner. Tomato sauce over freshly cooked pasta, meatballs, fresh garden salad and dessert are all included in the $10 donation fee at the door. Enjoy dining at the event or take your meal to go.

Q: Will there be entertainment?

A: There will be music playing throughout the event including classics, oldies and some country. We have a dance group performing as well, the Anthracite Rose Country Dance Group.

Q: What is your fundraising goal?

A: Our annual goal is between $20,000 and $30,000. This includes the total for all of our fundraising events over the year.

Q: Why is community support important?

A: Northeast Pennsylvania is an area with a high occurrence of not just lung cancer but all cancers. I feel this event and the other events we host each year provide a connective experience. Whether you lost a loved one to cancer, are fighting cancer yourself or are currently caring for someone with cancer, this event offers a place to connect with others in the fight for awareness and a cure.

If you go

What: Dine for a Cure Spaghetti Dinner hosted by Breathe Deep NEPA

When: Sunday, March 15, noon to 4 p.m.

Where: Bernardine Hall, SS. Peter & Paul Parish, 13 Hudson Road, Plains Twp.

Details: Admission is $10 and includes spaghetti and meatballs, salad and dessert for dining in or takeout. Buy tickets in advance by calling 570-690-6111 or at the door. For more information, visit the Facebook event page.