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Wedding gown sales raise money for St. Lawrence County Cancer Fund

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POTSDAM — Something old, new, borrowed and something for charity is at The Carol Lee Shoppe, 69 Market St., this bridal season.

The bridal shop is selling wedding dresses with a portion of the proceeds benefitting the Edward I. Moses Walk/ Run for Life, a fundraiser for the St. Lawrence County Cancer Fund.

Shop owner Julie A. Smith, Potsdam, said she and her employees spent several hours in the fall rearranging the store to make room for approximately 75 wedding gowns from a bridal shop in Ogdensburg, The Elegant Lady, 305 Main St., that recently closed.

Former owner of The Elegant Lady, KeithaLee M. Lauson, who is also a realtor and has since retired and moved to South Carolina, said she ran into problems trying to auction of the remainder of her dresses and needed to find a way to get them off her hands.

“The upstairs of our garage, which is like a whole separate apartment, was full of racks of gowns,” she said.

That’s when Penny Bogardus of Fowler, Mrs. Lauson’s associate real estate broker at Lacy Realty, 176 W Main St # 1, Gouverneur, suggested she sell them to benefit the St. Lawrence County Cancer Fund.

“My daughter-in-law, Jessica Bogardus, is on the committee for the Edward I. Moses Walk/Run for Life, which happens every April,” Mrs. Bogardus said. “We’ve always been looking for ways to raise money for the walk.”

Mrs. Lauson said they decided to have a bridal bazaar at the realty office in November to raise money for the walk.

“Anything that can go for a good cause, I’m all for it,” Mrs. Lauson said.

The sale raised about $900, but there were still over 70 dresses left without a home.

“They just couldn’t stay in the office,” Mrs. Bogardus said. “There was no room for them.”

Ms. Smith said Mrs. Bogardus contacted her, asking her to sell the dresses in her shop, with a portion of the price to benefit the walk.

“Charity’s always good,” Ms. Smith said. “It’s good to give back.”

Ms. Smith said she also contributed 25 to 30 gowns from her store to sell for the cause.

Ms. Smith said the shop hasn’t sold any dresses yet because the holiday season isn’t the best time to sell wedding gowns.

“We’re planning to take some of them to bridal shows starting next weekend to get the word out about them,” she said.

The Carol Lee Shoppe is open from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.

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