This annual “challenge fundraiser” is designed to help the Grange cover the operating expenses of the Hall, and to help fund the Hall projects organized by the FCCGH. Probably you all know that some generous supporters pledged $2,000 this year, to be matched by donations from the contra dance community. I’m pleased to report that donors to the fundraiser more than matched that!
Donations were solicited starting at the CDU dance on August 16th, and by the beginning of the ultimate event on Sept. 6th, $900 was already given. Rob Nichols was bringing in plants to give away in return for donations, and dessert makers were bringing in a huge variety of treats, both sweet and savory. Ben and Jerry’s donated big boxes of vanilla and strawberry ice cream. And the donations kept rolling in all evening, with exhortations from caller Nils Fredland, great music by the Free Raisins, and lots of good will from the dance community. During the evening, an anonymous donor even pledged to give an extra $500 if we met the “challenge” goal.
During the break, the dancers grazed on the potluck dessert treats downstairs, which were organized by Dana Dwinell-Yardley, and dropped money in the pitchers labeled for donations. A couple of us served cup after cup of Ben & Jerry’s donation, and the punch Dana made kept disappearing. Thomas Weiss organized dish-washing sinks, and lots of dancers pitched in to clean the glasses, plates and bowls–as usual, we use the Grange’s extensive supply of dishes and silverware, rather than paper products. The dessert treats ranged from tomatoes with goat cheese and olive slices, to vegan brownies, to gluten-free pumpkin bread with chocolate chips–and many more more traditional cookies, cakes and bars.
By about 10:30, Friends chair Patty Giavara, who was keeping track of donations was able to report that we had met the goal of $2,000 more in donations to add to the $2,000 previously pledged–so we also got the extra $500! The picture above shows Patty with the celebratory sign, to be placed on the “donation ladder” which had been climbed during the evening.
A bit more money was sent in in the next couple of days, so the total raised is actually $4,602!
Of this, $2,000 is being given to the Grange, which is chronically struggling to keep up with the many costs of supporting our Hall (heat, taxes, plowing and sanding, insurance and more), and the rest will help the Friends to fund the major renovation projects in the works–the basement fire egress improvements and bathroom renovations.
Thanks to everyone who donated to this fundraiser, and to everyone who helped set it up, including the donors who pledged the “Challenge” amount! As usual, the Grange survives and prospers when everyone pitches in, and this event was a great illustration!