A Gala Time
Entering its fifth year, the Chaska High School Activities and Athletics Fundraising Gala has been a great way for alumni to bond while raising money for an identified need within the school and its athletic facilities.
By Brenda Jerde
Administrative Assistant to the Athletic Director, Chaska High School
The Fifth Annual Chaska High School Activities and Athletics Fundraising Gala will be held April 15. What we have done is try to incorporate the Hall of Fame induction ceremony with the Gala piece, which is a fundraiser for the school.
Each year the money is set aside for a certain upgrade for the school's facilities. This year the proceeds are going towards a new sound system in our auditorium. Last year the funds were used for the weight room. Every year a need is identified.
Tickets cost $50 per person and include one drink ticket, appetizers, a traveling dinner, dessert, and coffee. The attire is semi-formal. Guests move from buffet table to buffet table and sample the various foods. Each table has the name of the restaurant or business that provides the meals.
The evening's festivities include the Hall of Fame program, a social hour, silent and live auctions, and raffles. The auction merchandise is donated by our community businesses.
A committee solicits the donations from various local businesses. It's basically done for goodwill purposes. The school sends a thank you letter afterwards for the contributions.
As far as an emcee, it changes every year. Last year a sports broadcaster from the University of Minnesota served as Master of Ceremonies.
We also have a donation contribution form on our school website where corporations, businesses, and service organizations can sponsor or co-sponsor a food station for either $1,000 or $500. That includes four or two complimentary Gala tickets, respectively. They can also make a cash contribution via check or credit card.
A Hall of Fame committee handles the nominations and inductees. We have a committee in charge of staying in touch with our alums and letting them know when the Gala will be held.
The location varies from year to year. This year it will be held at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, which just opened a new banquet facility.
The Gala is a great way for alums to mingle, along with their families, and enjoy a great evening of fun and camaraderie. And it is all for a great cause.