Founded 1901

Royal Purple

Founded 1901

Royal Purple

Founded 1901

Royal Purple

Arms up to raise ALS awareness


Sept. 3, 2014

By Vesna Brajkovic

As summer comes to a close, many will find themselves looking back on their summer break of long nights, bonfires and… ice buckets.

It’s the viral phenomenon that stormed our Facebook newsfeeds in a matter of months, replacing the cat gifs with videos of our friends, family and favorite celebrities shivering: the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge involves dumping a bucket of ice water on someone’s head 24 hours after being challenged, and then nominating three others to do the same in a video. The nominated participant may instead choose to “forfeit” by donating $100 to ALS research.

A few local businesses have joined the craze, including The Black Sheep, Whitewater Country Club, The SweetSpot and Dale’s Bootery & Pedothoric Services.

The Black Sheep’s administrative and general staff accepted their challenge from graphic designer Lindsey Tommesen of SugarTreePress, and chose to donate $200 to the John Paul II Medical Research Institute for ALS research.

Tyler Sailsbery, owner and chef of The Black Sheep, encourages others to do research and said that although the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge is getting the word out about a disease that many didn’t know anything about, donating is what is going to make a lasting impact.

“Without money, it’s not going to get a cure,” he said. “I think about all the diseases that we’ve eradicated…and I think ahead to when our children will look back and say, ‘Oh, that doesn’t exist anymore.’ We get to have a part in that, and we get to be the people that are paying for that research so that these diseases are eradicated.”

The Black Sheep nominated The SweetSpot as a whole to do the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

“I know that [the owners] believe in supporting good causes. We’re friends, as much as we are competition sometimes, in improving Whitewater, and improving the world,” Sailsbery said. “I know that’s their goal as much as it is our goal. I didn’t question for a second that they would be on board.”

After accepting the ALS Ice Bucket challenge, The SweetSpot added their own twist by also participating in a SMAshOut SMA Challenge beforehand. The SMA Challenge is to smash a cupcake in your face to raise awareness for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA).

The SweetSpot donated $20 for each of the 16 staff members who participated, including owner Lacey Reichwald, to both causes. The donation totaled $320. There were also additional individual donations given by staff members.

The SweetSpot nominated Dale’s Bootery and Taco Fresco.

“I think it’s important [to participate in these challenges] because a lot of these causes are relatively unknown,” Reichwald said. “There’s a lot of positive attention happening around it, and people are learning things that they didn’t know before.”

In other versions of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, the participant is expected to pay $10 if they accepted the challenge or $100 if they did not. The main goal is to spread awareness of the amyotropic lateral sclerosis (ALS.) The spilt second paralyzing feeling of the ice water hitting the skin is said to mildly simulate what ALS sufferers feel like on a daily basis.

ALS, more commonly referred to as “Lou Gehrig’s Disease,” is a fatal disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. People living with ALS progressively lose the ability to control voluntary muscles due to the degeneration, and eventual death, of their motor neutrons. In most cases, according to, ALS develops into complete paralysis, with individuals losing their ability to eat, speak, walk and, eventually, breathe. The involuntary functions, such as the brain, heart and senses, are largely unaffected. ALS is hard to diagnose, and there is no known cure or cause.

Since July 29, the ALS Association has received $94.3 million in donations compared to $2.7 million during the same time period last year, a difference of $91.6 million since the challenge started.

Although many people have donated or participated in the challenge, there are a few critics. Criticism surrounds the idea that many people are using the ice water as a way to “get out of” donating. Others raise concerns about how water is being wasted senselessly, especially in places like California, which is suffering a severe drought.

“I would really encourage people to really be aware of how much water they’re using while doing the challenge,” Reichwald said. “For instance, we shared buckets. Out of 16 of us we had eight buckets, so two people were under each one. I think it’s really important to be aware of that.”

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  • J

    Julie HilditchNov 6, 2023 at 12:24 pm

    In December my health took a turn for the worse I became very weak fast and could not even eat When I say fast I mean going from eating a full plate of food to three days later not being able to drink a a sip of water I went to VA hospital emergency room for dehydration and figure they schedule me for a feeling tube placement They admitted me and two weeks later I woke up to my standing over me in the hospital room this occurred during my second or third drug holiday from Radicava Again no way to know if what I experienced was a side effect When I was discharged I was completely paralyzed So i started on Ayurvedic treatment from Natural Herbs Centre as time went on movement returned to my legs and to my arms and hands Able to hold my head up and strength has returned I give credit to God and NHC for my recovery Almost forgot to mention I was on 24 hours ventilation Now only use vent at night and during naps Was diagnosed in 2021 with ALS. We’re a little scared to tell everyone because some people might not believe us, since there’s no cure for ALS. But when I saw this post, I decided to share our story. This treatment is a breakthrough!

  • V

    Veronica McKallMar 11, 2023 at 11:59 am

    My grandma has Lou Gehrig’s disease, she is about 75 years old it was diagnosed 2 years ago. Right now it’s getting more difficult to live for her, because of stiff muscles she can’t even move. Riluzole and Edaravone medicines are given, but won”t give much relief. She can”t eat food without choking. I thought this might be the last stage and the medications she was given did not help at all, so I started to do alot of research on natural treatments, I was introduced to Health Natural Centre and their ALS Herbal Protocol. She started on the ALS/MND Treatment last year, her symptoms gradually diminished including her vocal cord spasm, Body Weakness and Difficulty with swallowing. Reach them at , She is getting active again since starting this treatment, she is able to walk again ( down the street and back )she have also resumed exercising to strengthen muscles!! God Bless all ALS Caregivers. Stay Strong, take small moments throughout the day to thank yourself, to love your self, and pray to whatever faith, star, spiritual force you believe in and ask for strength. I can personally vouch for these remedy but you would probably need to decide what works best for you.

  • E

    Eugen LavoleJan 21, 2023 at 8:08 am

    My husband first symptoms of ALS occurred during covid, but was diagnosed in 2021 when he was 61 years. He was on Riluzole- not crazy about it! he was also on Gabapentin and Radicava not crazy about any of it either, The Rilutek (riluzole) did very little to help him. The medical team did even less. His decline was rapid and devastating. His arms weakened first, then his hands and legs. I was a master Gardener and love herbs! This ALS took my life from me, I was no longer able to work in my garden anymore because I was a full time caregiver for my husband. We stopped most of his ALS medications due to severe side effects and I started him on herbal treatments from Health Herbs Clinic (health herbs clinic. c om), the treatment has made a very huge difference for him. His symptoms including body weakness and slurred speech disappeared after few months on the treatment. He is getting active again since starting this treatment, he is able to walk and able to ride his treadmill again.

  • B

    Bonnie LundbergSep 6, 2021 at 12:49 pm

    My first symptoms of ALS occurred in 2011, couldn’t walk without a walker or a power chair, i had difficulty swallowing. I was given medications which helped but only for a short burst of time, then i decided to try alternative measures and began on ALS Formula treatment from Kycuyu Health Clinic, It has made a tremendous difference for me. I had improved walking balance, increased appetite, muscle strength, just amazing how effective this treatment helped me

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Arms up to raise ALS awareness