Fundraiser at Freeze Daddy’s slated for Kaylee Halko, progeria researchWritten by Vicki L. Kroll | | firstname.lastname@example.org
She’s been featured on a TLC documentary, charmed Dr. Mehmet Oz on his TV show, questioned Barbara Walters on “20/20” and last year stole the spotlight again in a commercial for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
July 28 is your chance to meet that little star with the ginormous personality: Kaylee Halko will work the window at Freeze Daddy’s, 8060 Monclova Road, Monclova.
“We let her take the orders,” said Ron Loeffler, owner of the ice cream shop. “We have her standing up on milk crates, and she’s up at eye level there with the window. She’ll take some of the orders, and she’s got a tip jar out.
“The last time, two years ago, she made about $150 in tips for herself. That’s why she likes doing it. She’s the center of attention, and she makes a few bucks,” he said and laughed. “She’s something else, that’s for sure.”
Loeffler is another fan of the spunky girl who has progeria, a rare rapid-aging disease.
“From 11:30 a.m. until 10 p.m. [July 28], I will donate 30 percent of our revenue to the Progeria Research Foundation,” he said.
Starting at 7 p.m., there’ll be classic wheels on display courtesy of the Glass City Corvette Club and the Oak Park Gang. Vic and his guitar will provide live music, a silent raffle will be held, and Kaylee will work the window in the evening.
Loeffler said a 2012 event raised $700 for the nonprofit dedicated to discovering treatments and a cure for the fatal genetic condition.
“We just want to do everything we can to help the Halkos because they’re a great family,” he said.
“We’re excited about this event,” said Marla Halko, Kaylee’s mom. “It’s a fun way to raise awareness and funds for progeria. We’re lucky to have a friend who wants to help us with the cause.”
Asked what the best part of the fundraiser will be, Kaylee, who turned 11 this month, shouted, “Ice cream!”
If you can’t make it to the event, stop by any time and order a Kaylee cone. The kid-sized treat has been on Freeze Daddy’s menu since it opened in 2010.
“We donate around 20 cents of each Kaylee cone to progeria research,” Loeffler said. “I usually donate about $1,200 a year; most of it’s from the Kaylee cones.”
Earlier this year, Loeffler took a photo of Kaylee eating ice cream and posted it on Freeze Daddy’s Facebook page.
“Our posts will get maybe 100 people see them or 200 is good,” he said. “The photo of Kaylee I put up got more than 700 likes. It’s just amazing the amount of people that follow her and care about her.”
Tags: 20/20, Barbar Walters, Dr. Oz, fatal genetic condition, Freeze Daddy's, Glass City Corvette Club, ice cream, Kaylee Halko, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Monclova, Oak Park Gang, Progeria Research Foundation, TLC documentary