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Fundraising for the Original Build

Movie Nights under the Stars

In the summer of 2003, community folks came by the numbers to watch Shrek. In the parking lot next to the JHU at Eastern building (that used to be Eastern High School) over 250 people came with chairs, blankets, sleeping bags. There was even an air mattress in the crowd. It included popcorn (donated by the Senator Movie Theater), sodas, and admissions cost of only a quarter. Watching a movie under the stars was like the old days for the adults and something new and fun for the children. We had so much fun, that we did it again a month later, even more folks came, this time, Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius was the pick of the night. We raised over $150! This was made possible thanks to a grant made by the Community Foundation.

In the summer of 2004 we showed Home on the Range, which was also a huge success!

movie spectators

setting up the screen

Spaghetti Dinners

On May 16th, 2003 we had our first Spaghetti Dinner. What an evening it was! The rain stopped just in time to bring out over 150 hungry supporters. New Waverly United Methodist Church graciously donated their dining hall for our dinner. The tables were decorated with red and white cloths and white vases with beautiful flowers as centerpieces. Now, let me tell you about the entertainment for the evening. The Waverly Rockers started us off with some really together steps. They are a group of 4th & 5th grade girls that entertained us with their choreography steps. Then the drums started, and all eyes were on the stage. For the next thirty minutes or so, we were treated to some awesome African drumming and dancing by Zaipo Oula and his dance troupe. He invited the children to dance with him on stage, and the little ones either climbed or were lifted on stage to dance, and did they dance. The entertainment was so great, some of our supporters shared that they came to have dinner and spend about an hour, but was having such a wonderful time, they stayed the entire evening. More entertainment followed, the Barclay Chorus, with such beautiful voices serenade us with a melody of songs led by their director, Mr. Derrick Thompson. Oh, it doesn't stop there, Christopher Seawall, an eight grader at Barclay, entertained us with a Michael Jackson impersonation. So, you see no matter what time folks came for dinner, they were truly entertained. Special thanks to Ashley and her teacher, Ms. Sandy from the Stadium School who volunteered to serve the dinners, and they served and served for 2 1/2 hours straight. Now, I think you would agree that this was the best deal in town last Friday evening. For only $5.00 you got all of this, a great meal, spaghetti marinara with meat or without, Italian Bread w/olive oil and butter, tossed salad w/ Italian dressing, delicious desserts, cold drinks and great entertainment. Because of the donations from our generous business partners, (Vallentinos, Big Sky breads, H&S Bakery, MS. Dessert, American Friends Services and New Waverly United Methodist Church) 100% of all proceeds for the evening went toward building the playground. And special thanks to the many volunteers that helped in any way.

The spaghetti dinner was such a hit we did it again the following year on Friday, March 12th.
Much thanks to all who were involved!

The Volcano Sign

Children from Waverly Elementary had the idea to put an erupting volcano on the sign that was erected on the playground site. The original "lava" was a red liquid that would increase in volume until we reached our financial goal. Unfortunately, the sign was tipped over when it was moved one day, and the red liquid spilled out, and was replaced with tape to indicate approximately where we stood. There were two unveiling ceremonies. Both got PR, but unfortunately I don't have any further information about them.

Fundraising sign with volcano


Many individuals, businesses and organizations donated to the original build. Much thanks to Betsy Krieger, the chair of the Fundraising Committee, and to all those who helped with the fundraising process. Please click here to see a list of contributors.

There was also a 'penny jar' initiative which was quite successful! Many people collected their own 'pennies for the playground' and erected 'penny jars' in public places, such as their schools and places of work, which actually made a significant impact, and helped include more people in the fundraising process.