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Helping with humor

file.jpegThey call her Shirley Valentine down at the Waterville Opera House and in performance venues across the state. Most recently, she was Hope in Aqua City Actors Theatre’s production of Almost, Maine, one of the most popular plays in the nation. Wherever you may find her, in places real or imagined, you’ll discover what those who attend the annual Lakewood May Day Auction already know: local actress and event auctioneer Marie Cormier can really bust a gut.

For two years, Marie has brought her energetic brand of humor to the May Day Auction, which is the largest annual fundraiser for Lakewood, a continuing care center on the Inland Hospital campus. At the auction, Marie and her daughter Karen take turns razzing Inland Hospital president John Dalton, singing off- kilter songs from their New Brunswick homeland, and motivating those in attendance to open their wallets and pocketbooks for a good cause.

Humor comes naturally to Marie, who transforms into Shirley Valentine for her popular one-woman shows in theaters, churches, and event centers. She eagerly lends her talent to the May Day Auction because she is passionate about Lakewood and inspired by the care provided by the staff.

“I am so impressed with the way they run Lakewood,” she says. “It’s the caring, and the subtle, gentle way they treat people.”

Proceeds from the auction fund Lakewood residents’ overnight summer trips to Belfast, where they can smell the fresh breezes and see beautiful views of the Maine coast. A portion of the money raised supports the newly-established Residents Activity Endowment Fund and other needs at Lakewood.

This year’s event is scheduled for Thursday, May 10 from 6-8 pm at Lakewood, 220 Kennedy Memorial Drive in Waterville—EMHS employees are encouraged to attend. Call Inland Hospital Foundation at 861-3377 to learn more.

Did you know? EMHS Foundation holds fundraising events across Maine, from Kennebunkport to Presque Isle, and EMHS employees are welcome to attend. Many of the events are family-friendly. To find an event near you, visit and click on “events and programs.”