SPEARFISH — Summer has officially come to an end for both teachers and their students. To kick off the school year, the Spearfish Foundation for Public Education organized a picnic Tuesday afternoon to thank everyone in the district for their efforts, and to recognize them for all of their hard work.
More than 200 teachers, student teachers and classified staff attended the event, which featured a wide variety of food donated by the Bum Steer, Sandford's Grub and Pub, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Common Grounds, Taco John’s, Taco Bell, Subway, Golden Dragon, Pizza Ranch, Papa John's Domino’s, Pizza Hut, Little Caesars, Sam and Louie's, Barbacoa's, Killian's Tavern, Stadium Sports, Cedar House, Millstone, Bay Leaf Café, Vanilla Bean Bakery, Perkins, Culver’s and Dairy Queen.
To entertain the crowd during the event, Gordy Pratt and Scott and Kris Stewart provided live music.
In addition to the picnic, the foundation also bestowed 20 mini grants to teachers and staff to assist with enhancing their curriculum.
Liz Manning, co-chairman of the foundation, said the turnout was much higher than it has been in year's past, and that each year the event continues to grow in popularity.
“We had a wonderful response and we're certainly grateful for all of the businesses that graciously donated food for everyone to enjoy,” Manning said.
Dave Peters, superintendent of the Spearfish School District, said the foundation does a good job at planning events to support and enhance educational experiences for area youth.
“This picnic is just another indication of their hard work and dedication, especially when they work with community organizations and businesses to further their efforts,” Peters said. “It definitely helps start off the year on a positive note.”
Mary Pochop, the public relations contact for the foundation, said they have been working with an ever-growing network of community supporters to invest in the success of the children of Spearfish since the organization's inception in 2001.
“With public education facing increasing challenges, the need for public and private sectors of our community to enhance the educational opportunities in our public schools is greater than ever,” Pochop said.
The Spearfish Foundation for Public Education works closely with, but independently from, the Spearfish School District. Pochop said the organization allows for businesses, individuals, civic and community organizations to invest their time and resources for the benefit of public education in our hometown.
“The foundation raises funds to enrich the academic opportunities for all students and staff in the public schools,” she said.
For more information on the Spearfish Foundation for Public Education, visit www.spearfishschools.org.