Those attending the 23rd Annual Boys and Girls Club Auction danced the night away with misty memories of days gone by that were enhanced by the "Retro Prom" theme. For many it was a time to make up for the prom night they never had while making a better day for the kids of today by raising $65,000 for the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Kenai Peninsula. The old Carr's mall was decorated to the hilt in "prom-ishy" style that brought the room alive. The spirited crowd of over 250 also voted to crown a freshman and senior king and queen and best dressed retro couple.
Mayor Peter Micciche, president of the Boys and Girls Club Board and emcee/auctioneer for the evening said, "These are tough times for non-profits on the Peninsula. Although the Boys and Girls Club on the Kenai is surviving, we have had to close one of our 7 locations (Seldovia). And for the first time in our 23 year history we've been forced to increase our membership fee. Since we turn no child away due to the inability to pay, auction earnings guarantee that we can provide services for kids whose families may not be able afford the fees. We serve nearly 5,000 kids on the Peninsula and our programs are more important than ever in providing a 'Positive Place for Kids.' We are humbled by the outpouring of support from the communities of the Peninsula that understand the importance of Boys and Girls Club youth development programs".
Micciche credited the success of the event to many volunteers and sponsors. "Tesoro Alaska again generously served as the main event sponsor. Udelhoven, Central Peninsula Hospital and Peak were secondary sponsors. The list goes on to include Charlotte's Catering, Kenai River Sportfishing, Arby's and the Navarre Family. BP and ConocoPhillips, two Cornerstone Sponsors also significantly contributing to the event," he said. According to Micciche the auction committee worked tirelessly weeks prior to the event requesting donations, decorating, preparing the delicious prime rib dinner, "A special thanks goes out to Lorraine Clare, my incredible wife Erin, Dana Cannava, Dana McDonald, Marlene Pearson, Carol Sheldon, Dave Ross, my daughter Madey, Alan Johnson, Patty Sancher, Chet Kimball, Camille Sorensen, Jeff Selinger, Jim Montgomery, Tim Redder, Wells Fargo 'bankers', James Clark, LaTisha Sargent, Heather Schloeman, Encore Dance and the hundreds of others that made the evening possible."
A highlight of the evening included a testimony from Soldotna Boys and Girls Club Torch Club member Kayli Kitchens. Micciche recognized Kayli and her group for their contributions to the community. Micciche announced, "Kayli and the Soldotna Torch Club kids exemplify the kind of kids that are involved with the Boys and Girls Club. They worked all year to raise several hundred dollars for the Torch Club. They worked hard and could have spent the money on anything they wanted for themselves, but instead contributed 100% of the money they raised to Central Peninsula Hospital for toys, blankets and items to make the rooms for kids admitted to the hospital fun and inviting. We are very proud of the Torch Club kids for their contribution."
If you missed the "Retro Prom" event but would like to contribute or learn more about Boys & Girls Clubs of the Kenai Peninsula call 283-2682 or you may designate your United Way campaign contribution to the Boys & Girls Clubs.
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