Managers Eat Live Cockroaches For United Way

Managers Eat Live Cockroaches For United Way




Posted: October 31, 2011 – 8:50am

By Samantha Foster


In a “Fear Factor”-style feat, two members of management at Schendel Pest Control, 1035 S.E. Quincy, ate live hissing cockroaches Monday morning.Their less than appealing breakfast was part of a company campaign to benefit United Way. Amber Dempewolf, who is on the company’s United Way committee, said the committee wanted to do something more disgusting than last year’s “kiss the rat” event. The committee selected five people from the company’s regional office in Topeka, and employees placed money in a bucket for whoever they wanted to see eat a cockroach.Bidding ended at 4 p.m. Friday, Dempewolf said, and a last-minute bidder ensured that the contest ended in a tie between Tim Barlow, regional director of operations, and Heath Kern, director of operations. Each winner earned $677 for United Way, and a total of $1,544 was earned through the bids.Barlow wrapped a cockroach in a pancake smothered with syrup, and he said all he could taste was pancake.Kern simply tossed one into his mouth.“I thought my partner in crime was going to do the same thing,” Barlow said about using the pancake. “But he just had to one-up me.”So Barlow grabbed another cockroach from the jar and popped it into his mouth.Afterward, Barlow said that while he didn’t have any nightmares about eating the cockroach, he did wake up in the middle of the night and think about it.Dempewolf said the cockroaches were purchased online from a farm in California that raises the insects.Schendel raised a total of $6,246 for United Way during its campaign, which included a handful of other fundraisers, surpassing its goal of $6,000.Brenda Guilfoyle, vice president of resource development for United Way of Greater Topeka, said she looked forward to Schendel’s “Fear Factor” event every year.“You just always wonder what they’re going to do next,” Guilfoyle said. “You can’t miss it.”

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Samantha Foster can be reached at (785) 295-1186 or samantha.foster@cjonline.com.