This year’s Taste of Kyrene proved to be larger than the last year’s event, with more guests and greater representation between staff leaders and community members.
“It’s definitely grown,” said MarJean Steinkamp, who was integral in setting up both events. “It’s just very, very exciting to see it get bigger.”
With 500 guests at the March 1 event, volunteers, primed and prodded by Steinkamp, raised more than $44,000 through ticket sales, auctioned-off baskets, opportunity drawing tickets, silent-auction treasures and corporate donations.
Proceeds from the glitzy, $80-per-couple event, held at Ashley Manor in west Chandler, will benefit all 25 Kyrene schools and the Kyrene Family Resource Center.
Funding will go to various preventive efforts; staff-, student- and friend-recognition and awards; and student scholarships for extra-curricular and student-enrichment programs such as sports, arts and academic support.
“We have so many amazing, dedicated volunteers who worked so hard,” Steinkamp said. “Bringing everyone together is what makes this event such a great success.”
For only a $10 ticket, Trisha Hill, a Kyrene parent with kids at Kyrene del Cielo Elementary School and Kyrene Aprende Middle School, won the grand prize this year: a family Disney adventure to Disneyland during a four-day deluxe hotel stay for two adults and two children.
Steinkamp said planning is already under way for next year’s Taste of Kyrene event, with a date set for Feb. 28, 2013.
Overall, the event was considered a major success for the district that Superintendent David Schauer said will help Kyrene schools to maintain existing programs and implement new ones, all focused on increasing the educational experience for students.