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Round up your change for the Ronald McDonald House

I have to admit before anything else that I don't often eat at McDonald's. We might stop for a soda or milk shake every now and then.

We used to go almost every week to get a Happy Meal for Cherry, our Pomeranian.

But every year, I volunteer to take a two-hour shift to kick off the Round-Up campaign. It ends June 17.

I didn't realize that McDonald's does not finance local Ronald McDonald Houses. Instead, each RMH is responsible for keeping its house afloat financially.

So the Round-Up is very important to our RMH.

I really hope you never have to use the RMH. It's built for families who have a child hospitalized. Instead of sleeping in one of the waiting rooms or in the car, the RMH is truly a comfortable "home away from home."

I've written about this before, but when my friends, Jan and Doug Crawford's daughter, Kendall was taken ill. They were driving back and forth to Atlanta and they took advantage of the RMH there. They realized there was no such place in Columbus, so they took it upon themselves to get a campaign started to build one here. That was back in 1993, I think.

Ours, 1959 Hamilton Road, is a beautiful, airy place. Any family can stay as long as you don't live right in Columbus, Phenix City or Fort Benning. You must be an out-of-towner. And it costs nothing for some and you pay what you can. Mostly. I really don't think there is a rate for staying. I may be wrong, but I don't think there is.

Anyway, it's a very special place and it needs the money that will be raised this weekend.

So even if you're like me and don't eat at McDonald's regularly, make an exception and come out and eat with us.

You don't even have to come see me. There will be other local "celebrities" at every single McDonald's in town.

Just pick one and be surprised.

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