Connie Yagelski-Marhanka Music Scholarship

Winners of the 2019 Connie Yagelski-Marhanka music scholarship were awarded to Michigan City High School's Aglaja Petrova and La Porte High School's Andrew Walma at the NewDay Concert and Fundraiser on Saturday, May 4th.

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The New Day Concert & Fundraiser

 Music was always an important form of therapy for Connie. It always comforted her in her struggles with cancer, while it uplifted and inspired the people who heard her sing like an angel. Once Connie had given her first teddy bear to a frightened cancer patient on their first day of chemotherapy, she knew that it was her purpose to use teddy bears as a means of comforting those people that were just beginning their journey with cancer. The idea of the NewDay Band was created when Connie tried to think of the best way to have a Teddy Bear Drive. She decided to organize a charity concert, with the price of admission being a new Teddy Bear for children at the children’s hospitals. She called on many of her musician friends to come and perform for the event. The first event was huge success and we collected over 300 teddy bears.

As many of you already know, in 2011 we changed the format of the concert from a teddy bear collection, to a fundraiser to help NewDay provide the much needed monies that are used to assist cancer patients and their families in our community. We still have the same music that we’ve had since Connie started this tradition nine years ago, and have been able to recruit many of the same popular musicians (plus more), but have moved the location from the Door Village Church, to a banquet hall to accommodate the ever growing audience for the event. We pride ourselves on having a wide variety of music so that we have something for everyone. At our concert you will hear country, rock, jazz, Christian, etc. 

The foundation has also started a Connie Yagelski-Marhanka Music Scholarship. It’s a scholarship given to high school seniors that are pursuing a future in music. The scholarship winners are announced and presented with their checks at the concert each year. It was a dream of Connie’s to help inspire young musicians to follow their dreams and aspirations in the field of music. Her dreams have become a reality at last. Come out to the concert for great music, good food, lots of prizes and help raise money to continue Connie’s legacy. 


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The NewDay Resurrection Race


The New Day Resurrection 5k/10k Race is held the day before Easter and is a celebration of life and hope that we have through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.

Our beautiful 5k course starts near Door Village UMC and loops around to complete a full "circle." All runners have the opportunity at the end of the 5k course to turn around and to "resurrect" the 5k course backwards (you do not have to run backwards but would be impressive to watch) to complete a 10k run. Along side the run we will be having a pancake breakfast from the time of registration (8 am) till the end of the event (noon). Before the start of the race there will be an Easter Egg hunt at the Door Village Park (provided by the Door Village Lions Club) and a 1-mile Family Fun Run free to everyone.

We are excited to announce that we will be keeping our registration fee at a low $25 for the 5K and $30 for the 10K this year which will include a warm breakfast for all participants. But you can save an additional $5 per person if you register before March 31th. You can also view year-by-year results in our ARCHIVES page.

So what are you waiting for? Come join us as we celebrate the Easter season and as we continue to minister to those battling cancer. All donations are tax exempt and any donation you make stays in our community to directly support individuals in need. 


Bags of Hope

 In continuing our mission to provide comfort and encouragement to those struggling with cancer in their lives, NewDay has opened yet another door. Late in 2006, a friend came to the congregation at Door Village United Methodist Church with an idea for the foundation. They had heard about a church in Michigan that was providing crocheted or knitted shawls to cancer patients in their community. 

After discussing the new idea and acquiring patterns, many friends, family and church members decided that they could do the same for the people of Northwest Indiana. Everyone became involved. If they didn't crochet or knit, they purchased yarn or donated toward the cost of materials. In the first year, this meaningful project had grown by leaps and bounds. NewDay now delivers Prayer Shawl gift packages of encouragement to many hospitals and medical facilities in Northwest Indiana and is continually expanding." A gift bag is presented to an adult patient upon his/her first chemo or radiation treatment as a sign of hope and promise. Each gift includes a hand crafted shawl, a general prayer card, a scroll with words of inspiration from cancer survivors, and often includes a small Teddy Bear or relaxing CD. The "Cave Scrappers", a group of local ladies, donate their time and talents decorating the fronts of journals that also go into the bags. Patients can write down their thoughts or feelings about their journey in the journal or keep track of questions they have for medical staff and information provided to them.

So many positive and encouraging comments have returned to us regarding this project. The people involved in this project are not only rewarded with the satisfaction of the gifts themselves, but by witnessing the love that goes into the shawls by the talented and special ladies providing them. There are several other church groups now involved, along with retirement centers and residences. We also have two ladies who have completed over 100 shawls each, one of whom is a cancer survivor herself.

The “giving” has worked full circle. The shawls have been sent all over the nation by family and friends. Everyone is aware of the true legacy that NewDay Foundation has continued to uphold. Connie's love and inspiration is every bit a part of this project of comfort and encouragement to all cancer patients. 

If anyone would like to knit or crochet shawls, or donate yarn, or money to purchase yarn for the shawls, please contact Joyce Marhanka at (219) 393-5097 for more information.  

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2019 New Day Resurrection Registration Form[5361] (pdf)




NewDay Concert Flyer 2019 (pdf)