Pete Nicholson of the Bar Harbor (MDI) Rotary Club had a fingernail painted purple in honor of polio eradication efforts. PHOTO COURTESY OF MDI ROTARY

Rotary to give polio the finger

BAR HARBOR — In honor of World Polio Day, the Bar Harbor (MDI) Rotary Club will host Purple Pinkie Day on Oct. 22 as a part of Rotary’s 27-year mission to eradicate polio, a crippling childhood disease.

The Rotary club and members of MDI High School’s Interact Club will paint pinkies for $1 to promote polio awareness at multiple locations in Bar Harbor. They will be at Pat’s Pizza and the Thirsty Whale from noon to 7 p.m. Pat’s will donate $1 for every pizza sold during that time period.

The Thirsty Whale will donate 50 cents for each draft sold during that time. Club members will sell “Give Polio the Finger” T-shirts and paint pinkies at an outdoor table between The First National Bank of Bar Harbor and Bar Harbor Bank & Trust from 1-4 p.m. Members will paint pinkies at The Criterion Theatre from 6-7 p.m.

“Polio is personal for me” said Lisa Horsch Clark, chair of the Bar Harbor (MDI) Rotary foundation committee. “My uncle had polio when he was younger, and 75 years later, he experienced post-polio syndrome. No one should ever experience this dreadful disease again. We are so close to eliminating polio from the world. Please come out and support our efforts on Sunday.”

A highly infectious disease, polio causes paralysis and is sometimes fatal. As there is no cure, the best protection is prevention. For as little as 60 cents worth of vaccine, a child can be protected against this crippling disease for life. After an international investment of more than $9 billion — and the successful engagement of over 200 countries and 20 million volunteers — polio could be the first human disease to be eradicated in the 21st century.



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