If you have been downtown Oakland recently you may have seen the art installation of colorful umbrellas lining Banker’s Alley located beside Healy Insurance (Formerly Kights Insurance) and the Sincell Building (former home to the Republican for many years)

The colorful display is all part of a charity campaign lead by Brenda’s Body Shop called Weathering Life’s Storms to benefit Cindy’s Fund. Each year the local dance school organizes an event to raise awareness and funds for a local charity.  “The community dance /charity events are a studio highlight each year, we are proud to have organized over 25 events which have now collectively raised over $325,000, stated Brenda Brosnihan, event organizer and owner of Brenda’s Body Shop.

“Weathering life’s storms” seems to fit what Cindy’s Fund does as they help Garrett County people weather the storm of cancer.  Cancer is an expensive disease, and the mission of Cindy’s Fund is to ease the financial burden.  We have been able to continue our mission because of the generosity of our community.  We are so grateful to Brenda’s Body Shop for inviting us to be part of this year’s umbrella fundraiser, stated Cindy’s Fund Founder, Sandy Bell.
The umbrella art installation is to raise awareness for Cindy’s Fund and encourage people to visit the display, consider donating to the charity or the purchase of a purple umbrella.   Purple is the color which represents all cancers and is the chosen color for the retail umbrellas.    The umbrellas are available at Green Acres, The Book Market, Greggs Pharmacy and Brenda’s Body Shop for a $20 donation.   “We hope Weathering Life’s Storms inspires business, organizations, and people to purchase an umbrella take their photos with it and post it on their social media to create a feel-good buzz in the community that’s fun and helpful to the campaign, stated Bell.

“We are so pleased with how the umbrella art installation turned out; it took an entire workday with a five-man crew from Brosnihan Builders to create the display.  This was a labor of love from my husband, Pete who donated the expertise and time for his crew.” stated Brenda Brosnihan.  “A project like this takes lots of planning and effort.
We could not have done it without the Town of Oakland’s support, the building owners of Healy Insurance, and the Sincell Family.  The Garrett County Arts Council help defray some of the cost by covering the building materials and hardware needed to hang the umbrellas.    The positive feedback we are seeing on social media and the joy the colorful display is bringing to everyone is truly heartwarming.     We are currently planning lots of fun performances, activities, and events to happen at umbrella alley and encourage everyone to continue to follow us at brendasbodyshop  and Cindy’s Fund on Facebook for schedules and details.  Donations can be made at Cindysfund.org   Persons interested in scheduling an event or happening in the alley can contact Brenda Brosnihan at brendasbodyshop@gmail.com