Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Rotary thanks

| December 28, 2022 7:45 AM

For 12 years, Brunch with Santa was one of the most anticipated Christmas events and the biggest fundraiser for the Rotary Club of Columbia Falls. Then came Covid and the event was canceled for two years.

With some trepidation Rotarians went out and knocked on the doors of local businesses and asked the community for donations. The response confirms that not only are the people of Columbia Falls generous, but they also missed BWS!

According to Secretary/Treasurer Roger Elliot (also a founding member of the club in 2006), receipts from sponsorships, donations and proceeds from the silent auction and lunch tickets brought in more support than any previous year.

This would not have been possible without the generosity of our three top corporate sponsors. With a tip of the hat to The Night before Christmas, “Come Freedom, Come Glacier, Come Whitefish C.U.; Thank you for giving so generously, too.” Other sponsors (“On, Comet! On, Cupid! On Donner and Blitzen!”) include Fidelity National Title, Specialty Rebuilders, Schellinger Construction, Re/Max Mountain View, Parkside Credit Union, Domino’s Pizza, and Columbia Mountain Kennels.

The willingness of management and residents at Timber Creek Village to host BWS again was invaluable, providing their kitchen, lunch room and more for the space attendees needed to browse auction items and have a private setting with Santa and Mrs. Claus. For the crew of Rotarians and other volunteers, such as members of Boy Scout Troop 1941, it was like hopping back on a sled and coasting downhill with all the bumps, twists and turns navigated without a fall.

In addition to more than 50 items donated for the auction, food came from The Nite Owl, Three Forks Grille, Tien’s Place, Laurie’s Deli, Domino’s Pizza, Panera Bread, Timber Creek Village, and the Boy Scouts cooking pancakes. All the financial support received is returned to the community, making it possible for the Rotary Club of Columbia Falls to support local nonprofits monetarily and for members to work on other community projects throughout the year.

Thank you, Columbia Falls, and to Santa and Mrs. Claus (Paul Dube and Lenny Granger). Happy New Year!

Roger Hopkins

President, Columbia Falls Rotary