Monday, February 17, 2014

Fundraiser for new playground at Redmond Elementary

Fundraiser for new playground at Redmond Elementary

Spaghetti Dinner Fundraiser on Friday, March 21 at the Old Redmond Schoolhouse Community Center.  Tickets & Details:

- A safe gathering place for kids in our community.
- For many families nearby . . . the only outside place to play.

- City of Redmond Community Center summer programs share it.
- Lake Washington Youth Soccer families use it in the fall.
- Redmond El students play on it all winter.
- Redmond West Little League families use it in the spring.  Read More >>
- PTSA built the old one . . . over 10 years ago.
District capital money is in short supply.
- Our kids need a larger space to play on.
- With 34% free or reduced lunch, we need your help.
- If we can raise money in time . . . Build Summer 2014
- If it takes longer . . . Build December 2014
- We already raised $18,899 of the $35,355 we need!
- If we raise more than we need, we can expand playground proposal.

Tickets at:


Anonymous said...

- PTSA built the old one . . . over 10 years ago.


My couches are 18 years old, grill nearly 20, t.v. is 11, car 9. All of these things are deemed "old" by LWSD and should be thrown away!

Steve Hitch said...

I want to respond to “Anonymous” concern about LWSD throwing away the old playground at Redmond El. The old playground is not being thrown away by anyone. It will continue to be repaired and maintained by LWSD. LWSD didn’t have money to build the last playground and won’t be funding construction of the new one. What we have here is a community initiative to come out to support the children of our community; like the baseball families you can see out there every Saturday and evening this spring using these playgrounds; and the students at this school who want a good place to play.

Steve Hitch
Redmond Elementary PTSA

Jean Avery said...

To the anonymous person with a concern about this project:

I agree 100% that we shouldn't discard something that is usable and meets our school and our community's needs. But to use you analogy, if your car's brakes started squeaking, or if you suddenly had twice as many children to drive around every day, would your car need replacing?

I think the broader concern about LWSD replacement strategies is a valid one - but is not relevant to this NON-District funded grassroots project. (BTW, the District is listening - that concern, shared by many, is addressed in the *smaller* scale bond up for vote in April.)

While it's easy to paint all Redmond students with a broad 'rich kid' brush, it may surprise you to know that 39%+ of our students come from low-income families. These kids don't have the option of karate lessons, elite soccer leagues and other ways to stay active and healthy. Our playground - happily - gets more heavy use than many, by Red El students and other community members. We do not check IDs or bank accounts at the door - it is a resource for everyone.

Our team has put in hundreds of (unpaid) volunteer hours to create a fun, financially-accessible community event for those who would like to participate. If you really want to know what our project is all about, I hope you'll buy a ticket, come with an open mind, and meet the volunteers who work thousands of hours every year on behalf of our kids and our community. There are some realities - financial and otherwise - we can't change for our kids. But if I can improve my community for the price of a plate of pasta, I consider that a very worthwhile investment.

Jean Avery
Redmond El parent

Steve Hitch said...

What an amazing event! The Spaghetti Dinner was a complete success. Our event goal: $5,000. We brought in at least $10,000. Guidance from City Council member David Carson who conceived of the idea in a conversation with Lisa Lange last fall, helped shepherd us to the end, and led to two days of cooking, combined with advice from Redmond’s Bar and Grill helped us create a successful game plan. The professionals from Pomegranate / Lisa Dupar Catering Jonathan Zimmer and Chet Hunt, brought us the confidence to know the plan would work. Mayor John Marchione kicked us off as we started our program. The hospitality and antics of Council Members David Carson, John Stilin, Byron Shutz, Hank Margeson (the quorum in the kitchen) and Woodmark Hotel’s Jess Lynes gave a welcoming and energetic face to the food line and kept it moving quickly. Patti Margeson was a great leader on the back end, with the support of volunteers from Matt Flinn State Farm, Concur Technologies, and Discover Yoga helping kids get their trays safely to their tables and clearing as people finished. The army of Redmond El parents jumping in to help with planning, finding sponsors, delivering materials, setting up and decorating, cooking, selling tickets, supporting the auction, clearing tables, and cleaning up at the end was gratifying. What a community we have!

The key to the fundraising here was keeping our costs low with in-kind donations. The venue was provided through a partnership between the City of Redmond and Lake Washington School District. The entertainment was provided by the Redmond Academy of Junior Voices. The food came from Redmond’s Bar and Grill, Pomagranate Bistro / Lisa Dupar Catering, Papa Johns Pizza, Frankie’s Pizza and Pasta, Great American Opportunities, and others.

Thanks to our sponsors: Katie Ostler, DMD Family & Cosmetic Dentist, Golder Associates, JJ Mahoneys, LTC Solutions, Inc., LWPTSA Council, Redmond El staff, Redmond Middle School PTSA, Roos Orthodontics, Kevin Kelly, Sandra Vargas.

Thanks to our fund-an-item contributors who sponsored playground items: Steve & Shannon Hitch; Jason Roof & Josephine Wang; Dave and Sierra Forstrom; Matt Flynn State Farm; Kelly Young & Tracey Schofield. People had fun with the 50/50 raffle and getting some great wine packages from the silent auction.

Thanks to the 300 people who bought tickets and came out to support our school. And those who made donations on line or direct at the school. And the Microsoft matching that is making some of those donations go farther. With this success, we are very close to funding the playground. Once we have all our expenses tracked and funds deposited, we’ll report out on how much of a gap we have left.

Worst case, we are looking at a $5,000 gap. Best case looks much better. We have some really good leads on closing the gap, too. I’m feeling optimistic!

Steve Hitch
Redmond Elementary PTSA

Executive Vice President

Steve Hitch said...
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