There was green all around at the St. Patrick’s celebration kick-off of the Fund for Mitchell County’s 15th anniversary year. Green auctions items, which brought in green to enrich the Fund; green food, and Irish music by Patrick and Cathy Sky all enhanced the festivities, which netted $2,300 to add to the Fund’s treasury. Chairman Dan Barron called on nonprofit leaders to tell the audience how grants from the Fund have helped their nonprofit organizations. Since its beginning in 1999 the Fund has given out 54 grants to 30 organizations, for a grand total of $536,159. The Fund is an affiliate of the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina.
Speaking were two arts leaders – Denise Cook for the Toe River Arts Council and Stacey Lane for Penland School of Crafts; agricultural leader Jeremy DeLisle for the TRACTOR project; three leaders of human service organizations – Silvia Peterson of Service Centro de Latino, Cheech Stewart of Mitchell County Safe Place, and Martha Gordon of Shepherd’s Staff. Steve Van der Vorst of Camp Spring Creek stood in for his wife Susie to talk about the project she leads in the schools, teaching teachers how to employ the Orton-Gillingham method of teaching reading.
A number of artists and businesses donated items for the Silent Auction. They were Harding's Landscaping, Fitness Express, Michael Gunter, Lynn McKinney, Doug Sudduth, Spruce Pine Florist, Speckled Dog Pottery, Dot's Coffee Shop, Back Porch Chimes, Nick and Lisa Joerling, Michael Kline, Stacey Lane, Camp Spring Creek, MC Safe Place, Ironwood Therapeutics, The Market on Oak, Green Goddess Organic Salon, Dan and Brette Barron, Ken Sedberry, Rivers Edge Outfitters, Silvia Peterson, Appalachian Eye Associates and The Dispensary. The Pizza Shop and Ingles were both event sponsors. Delphia Lamberson gave the grand prize, a rhinestone brooch, which Jane Crowe won.
The Fund for Mitchell County seeks funding from individuals and businesses throughout the year in an effort to grow the endowment and subsequently increase the number and size of grants to Mitchell County nonprofits. The fiscal year ends June 30, and contributions may be sent to the Fund for Mitchell County, PO Box 1101, Spruce Pine, NC 28777.