First annual smoke-off supports local students

To help usher in a new year of education, Bonney Lake Mayor Neil Johnson and the Johnson Cancer Foundation is hosting its first ever smoke-off and auction to raise money for students looking to further their schooling.

To help usher in a new year of education, Bonney Lake Mayor Neil Johnson and the Johnson Cancer Foundation is hosting its first ever smoke-off and auction to raise money for students looking to further their schooling.

The smoke-off and silent auction is planned for 3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 16, at Swiss Park. Dinner and a live auction will follow at 6 p.m. and dancing at 8 p.m.

“It’s a dream come true and a long time in the making for the Foundation to be at this point,” Johnson said. “The other great part is that we will be awarding our first scholarship at the event.”

While Johnson is hoping people will come to just have fun and learn more about their foundation and their purpose, he’s also hoping more folks will sign up for the smoke off.

So far, five teams have signed up, but he’s hoping to double that number.

To compete, teams must provide 10 samples each of ribs, chicken and “mystery meat” by the time judging begins.

Competitors must provide their own materials, including smoker or barbecue, tables, chairs, and other necessary tools.

Teams are allowed to arrive at 8 a.m. to begin setting up.

To apply to compete, hear to (or click here).

Tickets to the event are $20. Dinner will be catered by Dixies BBQ.

All money raised at the event will go toward to the Johnson Cancer Foundation, which provides scholarships to students whose lives have been affected by cancer.


The Johnson Cancer Foundation officially began early February 2017, although its founder has been thinking of starting the non-profit long before even he was diagnosed with cancer.

In 2008, Johnson’s nephew Kevin Patoc died of leukemia while attending Hawai’i Pacific University.

While Patoc was sick, his parents were attempting to secure scholarships for their other children, but couldn’t because of their high income.

“They kept getting turned down, because on paper, they made too much money,” Johnson recalled. “But the reality was, when the bills came in, they were broke.”

Johnson had the same experience when he was trying to find scholarships for his eldest daughter Rendi while he was being treated with cancer.

“So I told my wife, after my transplant, I said if I make it through this, we need to get a foundation started for the kids in our area that doesn’t disqualify you because of what your income tax statement says,” Johnson said. “It will base it on reality.”

This year, the Johnson Cancer Foundation offered a total $12,000 in scholarships.

The scholarship is open to all students in the Sumner, White River and Enumclaw school districts who have been personally affected, or their immediate family has been impacted, by cancer.

Applicants can be attending a four-year university, a community college or a vocation school.

Applications for the 2017-2018 school year are due April 27.

More in News

Recovering the mantle of ‘senior’

The Enumclaw Senior Center, with the help of a potential five-year grant from the county, hopes to change how people think about getting older.

Enumclaw mayor’s proposed budget reflects recent growth, stashes money in reserves

One suggestion was to delete funding for the city’s Art Department. While other council members are suggesting a compromise, citizens can make their input official during the first public hearing on Nov. 13.

Paul Allen, shown in 2015. Courtesy of the Herald
Paul Allen dead at 65

Microsoft co-founder, developer, and philanthropist struggled with cancer for decades

East Pierce Fire and Rescue Commissioners approved the upcoming $80 million bond measure for the ballot during their July 17 meeting. A supermajority of voters, or 60 percent, need to approve the measure for it to pass. File photo Ray Miller-Still
East Pierce Fire and Rescue residents, look for $80 million bond measure on ballot

The vast majority of the money will go replacing five fire stations on the Plateau.

Pierce library system seeking levy lift to keep facilities, programs operating

If approved, the levy will increase the annual tax bill by around $32 a year, bringing the average total up to $160 annually.

DOT invites public to see SR 410 survey results

Changes to help reduce traffic on the highway will be slow in coming, but one of the first major steps has now been completed.

State Supreme Court strikes down death penalty

All nine justices found the use of capital punishment in Washington state unconstitutional and racially biased.

King County Executive announces new and expanded emergency housing options | King County

Dow Constantine said a total of between 285-310 new beds would be available by the end of the 2018 year, along with an additional day center and increased street outreach.

Incarcerated and infirmed: How Northwest Detention Center is failing sick inmates

Inadequate medical care plagues immigrants at facility, but ICE claims otherwise

Most Read