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Valentine's Day dinner held for NCIU parents

Parents had a chance to have a meal without having to go far from their newborns.

DANVILLE, Pa. — An area hospital made it a very special valentine's day for several couples.

Geisinger Medical Center near Danville held Valentine's Day dinner for parents with infants in its neonatal intensive care unit.

As couples dined by candlelight, romantic music filled the air.

This was the perfect setting for a valentine's day dinner with a loved one.

“Oh, it's awesome, it is nice,” said Allison Watkins from Blossburg.

But this isn't a fancy restaurant and these aren't paying customers.

This dinner is being held inside Geisinger Medical Center near Danville and the diners are parents with newborns in the hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit.

Erin Scott-Ellard and Ronan Ellard say their two-week-old daughter, Cora was born at just 25 weeks.

“Just weighed 15.9 ounces and we just got her over a pound, just this week. So, she's had her up and down,” said Scott-Ellard.

“It's really tough because we're an hour away so, I work, she doesn’t and we have another son together so driving back and forth every day, it's hard,” said Alex Scott from Girardville.

Organizers say this dinner gives parents a chance to have Valentine's Day dinner with each other without having to go far from their newborns.

“It's nice just to be here, we can go right back up afterward,” said Ellard.

“It's incredible, especially since we're always trying to be by our baby's bedside and it's Valentine's Day, having him is a great gift for us but this is really nice for Geisinger to do,” said Vincent Watkins.

This is the third year for this Valentine's Day dinner at the hospital and it's hosted by the March of Dimes.

And the main goal is just to give these couples a moment to take their minds off their worries.

“I can't tell you how many have said to me, we didn't know that we needed this but we really needed this,” said Phoebe Beckley with the March of Dimes.

“You have your days that are really tough and this gives to you a chance to feel a bit normal and have something happy,” said Scott-Ellard.

And some good news on this day devoted to love.

A family tells Newswatch 16 they hope to take their newborn home this weekend.

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