POTTSVILLE — Now retired after 42 years as a surgeon in Schuylkill County, Dr. Abdul Wahhab has been able to put more time into painting. He completed more than 100 paintings in just over the last six months.
“This is my passion,” Wahhab said Thursday in his home studio.
All of the art will be auctioned off next month as part of the Lehigh Valley Hospital-Schuylkill Auxiliary’s Art For A Cause breast cancer awareness dinner. Doors will open at 6 p.m. Oct. 18 at The Lodge at Sharp Mountain, 201 S. 26th St., Pottsville. The art auction begins at 7 p.m. Tickets are available for $ 35. They will be $ 40 at the door.
“All the money does stay here in Schuylkill County,” Mary Bardell, auxiliary liaison, said. “It does support women here in Schuylkill County.”
The auxiliary has hosted an annual breast cancer awareness dinner every October, but decided to include an auction for the first time this year, Bardell said.
“We changed it up because Dr. Wahhab decided he wanted to do something for the hospital and what better cause than breast cancer,” Bardell said. “I think the cause is very close and near and dear to his heart, and we thought it would be a good fit.”
Wahhab said he has donated a painting nearly every year in support of the hospital’s breast cancer awareness efforts.
“I’m very excited this year because I have so many different paintings,” Wahhab said. “This time I have a lot of big pictures. It’s amazing how some of them came out, much better than I dreamed.”
Many of the paintings are of various colorful flowers. There are also paintings of orange sunsets and one of the Turkish Whirling Dervishes dance group.
“We are obviously thrilled about what Dr. Wahhab is doing for the auction at our dinner,” M. Michael Peckman, director of marketing and public relations for Lehigh Valley Health Network, said.
Dr. Kristina Thornburg, a Pottsville surgeon, will serve as guest speaker for the event.
“It is also an educational program,” Peckman said. “Dr. Thornberg will talk about breast cancer and it is an opportunity for women to learn about the great resources available in the county.”
Art For A Cause is just one of many events and activities the hospital has planned for National Breast Cancer Awareness month.
The hospital is offering reduced price mammogram screenings through the month of October. To be eligible for the screening, participants must not be pregnant or nursing, have not had a mammogram in the past year, be over 40 and have a physician order. They can register by calling 570-621-5999.
“We believe that early detection is key,” Peckman said. “A segment of our community really responds to this and greatly appreciate it. It is a great resource to those who need it.”
On Oct. 2, the hospital will be broadcasting its I Pink I Can program at its Cedar Crest facility to the Wall Auditorium in Pottsville. The free program covers current topics in cardiac care, breast and gynecologic health. Interactive resource stations detailing breast health services, Lehigh Valley Health Network Support of Survivors group, cancer support, American Cancer Society and fitness and rehabilitation will be available starting at 5 p.m. The program begins at 5:30 p.m. Seating is limited. To RSVP, call 888-402-5846.
Schaeffer’s Harley-Davidson, 1123 Brick Hill Road, Orwigsburg, is hosting an all you-can-eat spaghetti dinner noon to 6 p.m. Oct. 21 with proceeds benefiting the gentle yoga program for cancer patients at Lehigh Valley Hospital-Schuylkill. It is $ 8 for adults, $ 5 for children ages 4 to 10 and free for children under 3. The dinner includes spaghetti, salad roll and drink. Desserts are available for purchase and there will be a Chinese basket auction.
The spaghetti dinner is sponsored by the Deer Lake Chapter Harley Owner’s Group, Ladies of Harley and Schaeffer’s Harley-Davidson. For more information, call 570-366-0143.
Finally, the Lehigh Valley Health Network Rehabilitation Center-Schuylkill, 300 Schuylkill Medical Plaza, Pottsville, will host a free community lecture called Living with Lymphedema. The presentation with Patty Gregas, director of therapy, starts at 6 p.m. Oct. 24. For more information, call 570-621-9500.
Contact the writer: [email protected]; 570-628-6023