‘Great Big Kids Event’ nearing

BREMEN — The deadline to reserve a seat or table for the Boys and Girls Club of Bremen’s fourth annual “Great Big Kids Event” is quickly drawing near.
Scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Saturday, March 23, at Bremen Church of the Brethren, the “Great Big Kids Event” is the Boys and Girls Club of Bremen’s largest fundraiser of the year.
The theme for this year’s dinner and silent auction is the same as it was for the club’s Fourth of July parade float, “Inspiring Future Stars.”
The deadline is Thursday, March 14, to reserve a seat. Tickets are $35 for individuals, $50 for couples and $200 for a table of eight.
The club hopes to raise $10,000 with the fundraiser and is seeking individual and corporate donations for the silent auction.
“We would love to increase the awareness of the (Boys and Girls Club of Bremen) and the event,” Jill Hassel, the advisory council board’s chair, said via email.
“We would love to get more community members involved in the event (by attending) or donating a gift for the silent auction,” she continued. “Donations can be made even if they don’t want to attend.”
The club’s goal is to enable all young people, especially those that have a need, to reach their full potential as productive, caring and responsible citizens by offering them programs accentuating their academic enrichment, character and leadership development, good health and life skills while also offering a safe, recreational environment.
The club, which meets at Bremen Elementary-Middle School, has an average daily attendance of about 80 and an overall membership of close to 140.
“Our club provides daily activities that focus on character and leadership, health and life skills, the arts, sports, fitness and recreation, and education and career exploration,” Hassel said.
But for the Boys and Girls Club to reach its $10,000 fundraising goal, its going to need the community’s help.
“In order to meet this goal, we are asking our community for their support,” Hassel said. “Please consider donating an item toward our auction or monetary means in order for us to purchase items.
“Auction items raise the majority of our funds for this event.”
Some recommended silent auction donation items for women include jewelry, designer purses, massage packages, fine wines and vacation getaways.
For men, recommended donation items include sports tickets, electronics, power tools and food.
Items already scheduled to be auctioned include a vacation/cruise (donated by Oliver Ford), Notre Dame women’s basketball tickets, photography packages (donated by Main Pose Photography), a full meal catered by Hoosier Catering (donated by Mary Beth Listenberger, owner of Hoosier Catering), and gift cards (donated by Studio 2000, Corndance Café, Chili’s and other area businesses).
A 51-inch Sony plasma TV will be raffled.
Along with such groups and businesses as Kiwanis, Bremen Conservation Club, Marshal County United Way, Bellman Oil and Bremen Casting, the club also gets funding support from local Psi Iota Xi members, said Cynthia Main, advisory board member.
“Each year at the parade they have a hot dog stand and donate the proceeds to us,” Main said.
It costs the club about $400 per child per year. However, families pay $50 for the first child, $40 for the second child, $30 for the third, and $20 for the fourth. Some children are on scholarships, however.
Last year, the Boys and Girls raised about $6,000 from the annual “Great Big Kids Event,” with close to 100 people attending.
Those interested in attending the Italian-style buffet dinner and silent auction, making a tax-deductible donation, or buying a $1 raffle ticket, should contact Jill Hassel at 574-546-2109 or Bill Ginter at 574-546-2188.
Tickets are also available at the BEMS cafeteria during club hours of 3-6 p.m.