The Boys & Girls Club of Fond du Lac held its third annual SPELL for Great Futures team spelling bee on October 12th. Business and community leaders were randomly teamed up with Club members to compete in this magical, Alice Through the Looking Glass themed event. Presented by Society Insurance and coupled with other numerous sponsorships from local businesses, the event raised over $21,000 to directly support the Club’s academic programs.
Over 170 people attended the event and were treated to a special introduction highlighting the 24 teams competing in the spelling bee, comprised of a total of 72 participants.
Placing third in the spelling bee was Kathy Loppnow (Michels Corporation), Janeth Carbajal and Walter Ruis. Coming in second place was Theresa Eimerman (Society Insurance), Stephanie Lopez and Wesley Baganz. And placing first was Amber Kilawee (Fond du Lac Area United Way), Ayden Heim and Byron Little (pictured below with trophy). Kilawee stated, “We didn't go in with the expectation of being the last team standing, but it certainly was a pleasant surprise and a moment the three of us won’t soon forget. It was truly an honor to participate with two outstanding kids. We encouraged each other throughout the evening with a ton of high fives and enjoyed working together. This event gives community stakeholders a unique opportunity to connect with Club youth in a way that touches each participant involved and positively impacts the entire organization.”
Following the competition, attendees were invited to a reception in the Club’s Teen Center featuring a photo booth with a giant hand-painted mirror backdrop and 1,500 boneless wings courtesy of Buffalo Wild Wings.
Click on the video below to learn more about this event...
The 8th Annual Reach for the Stars Dinner and Auction was truly an exceptional, one-of-a-kind evening for the organization’s donors and supporters. The event is held each February to benefit the Boys & Girls Club’s summer programs provided to youth in the Fond du Lac community. Presented by Grande Cheese and hosted at the Holiday Inn Conference Center, Reach for the Stars included wonderful hors d'oeuvres, a classy dinner, exciting auction and raffle packages, an unforgettable special program, high energy entertainment and an inspiring speech from the Boys & Girls Club’s 2016 Youth of the Year, Isabel McLeod. As she spoke about her experiences, Isabel shared that she moved to Fond du Lac from a small town in Washington, and had trouble making new friends. The Boys & Girls Club changed that, allowing her to gain confidence, a place where she felt safe, acceptance and support from everyone, no matter what.
Over 230 people attended the dinner, an incredible 20% increase over the 2015 event. Guests were treated to a special program highlighting an interview panel of four outstanding Club Alumni members, including Amy Guell, Blayne Meyer, Cordell Ashford and Eric Pantojas. The Alumni members spoke candidly about their past experiences as a Club kid and how the organization contributed to their success as young adults. Coupled with numerous sponsorships from local businesses, the Reach for the Stars event raised over $73,000 in support of summer programs. This event marked the largest single fundraising event in the history of the organization.
A significant portion of the proceeds raised at the event stemmed from the Summer Scholarship Promotion, boosted when doors to the dining room opened and 100 Club kids donned in colorful Boys & Girls Club t-shirts marched in to the surprise and awe of the attendees. This resulted in a grand total of 130 sponsored memberships for the upcoming summer program. Of the outpouring of support, Dan Hebel, CEO of the Boys & Girls Club of Fond du Lac stated, “Our community cares deeply about the lives and success of our children, simple as that. Donors of the Boys & Girls Club have accepted the challenge to ensure that all kids in our community have a second home to call their own. We are proud to be at the forefront of our community’s commitment to improving the lives of children, especially those who need us most.”
THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS!