Tuohey family sets big goal in selling ‘elephant links’ for Alzheimer’s Association

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent Posted 3 October 2022 at 6:47 pm

Photo courtesy of Mary Lou Tuohey: Nicole Tuohey holds some of the paper chain she calls “elephant links” which are sold at her mother’s store, Case-Nic Cookies, to benefit the Alzheimer’s Association. Both of Nicole’s grandparents died of Alzheimer’s Disease.

MEDINA – Each year, Nicole Tuohey and her family have a goal – to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Association.

Both Nicole’s maternal grandparents died of Alzheimer’s, so the disease is no stranger.

Nicole’s mother Mary Lou Tuohey owns Case-Nic Cookies, where she is always eager to support a charity, and the Alzheimer’s Association is a special one to the family.

In addition to loaning the use of her store’s front windows for a basket raffle, Mary Lou also helps Nicole raise money in other ways.

As elephants are associated with memory (it is said an elephant never forgets), in 2008 Nicole and her mother came up with an idea to sell links of construction paper at the cookie store for $1.

Nicole calls them her “elephant links.” Then Nicole tapes them together and anyone who buys a link gets a frosted elephant cutout cookie which Mary Lou baked.

It has always been Nicole’s goal to sell enough links to stretch down the entire block of downtown Main Street. Last year, she sold enough to almost reach the end of the stores down to Five Star Bank, raising a record $1,639.

Mary Lou also devised a unique way to make the basket raffle accessible to everyone. She places a bucket in the entryway of her store at 439 Main St. Inside are envelopes with a paper listing all the baskets.

Donors put their money in the envelope for the number of tickets they want, then mark after each item how many of those tickets they want placed on each basket. Then the envelope is sealed and dropped through a slot in the door. That makes is possible for people to participate in the raffle whether the store is open or not.

The money raised is donated to the Alzheimer’s Association the day of walk, which this year is Oct. 8, starting in State Street Park. Registration begins at 10 a.m., with the opening ceremony at 11 a.m. followed by the walk at 11:15 a.m.