Community supports Sober Grad Night
You don't always know what kind of community you live in until the support comes knocking at your door. That's the case for the senior Class of 2010 at Gridley High School.
It's that time of the year again when senior classes in our communities begin the difficult process of preparing for their Sober Grad Nights. In order for these events to be successful, a large amount of funds are needed for the night to be a sensation. At Gridley High School, we decided to begin this process early to give ourselves plenty of time to achieve our goal of raising more than $6,000.
The generosity of the Gridley community is overwhelming even in the time of such economic distress. In November, we held a See's Candy fundraiser to start off the task ahead of us. Senior class members sold Christmas See's Candy over a two-week period, selling more than $3,000 of candy to community members, friends and family. We also solicited community members through 50/50 raffles at our home football games. Again, our charitable community astounded us.
Our latest endeavor has amazed me the most. As the head of the Sober Grad Night Committee for the Class of 2010, I organized letters to our local businesses and community members asking for their support once again. To my surprise, within two days, donations began to pour in. In the last three weeks, there has been anywhere from $100 to $500 in the mail — every day.
Businesses from Gridley, surrounding communities, individuals and organizations have contributed to our efforts in hopes of keeping all graduates safe on graduation night. Many businesses do not have a connection to any of the graduates, but yet, they still donate money or prizes knowing that it will be an incentive for us to attend the Sober Grad Night party. The support we have received has surpassed the expectations of all committee members, including myself.
Joe Lamson, manager of Gridley's Les Schwab and financial secretary of Knights of Columbus, even hand-delivered two checks — one from each affiliate — to my door.
Lamson said, "We (Les Schwab and Knights of Columbus) are big believers in taking care of those that take care of you, and the more we support each other, the better our communities become. ... Donating back to the families and kids of surrounding communities completes the circle of supporting one another."
Lamson's business and organization avidly donate to many of our community's important functions, including Pop Warner football, Little League, scholarships and of course, Sober Grad Night.
Many people feel that we are at a great disadvantage living in the small town of Gridley, but it is at times like these that I know how grateful the Class of 2010 is to be supported by such a community. Because of our community's thoughtfulness, our Sober Grad Night will be a night for all of us to remember.
So on behalf of the Class of 2010 at Gridley High School, I would like to personally thank all those who have generously donated to the night that promises to protect our future.
Amber McIntire is a senior at Gridley High School. Her column appears about every sixth week in Education.