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KEF presents Lights, Camera, Auction 2022!

Event benefits PE and STEAM programs at Kenwood Elementary School

The Kenwood Education Foundation (KEF), which supports educational programs at Kenwood Elementary School, is hosting its annual fundraiser, Lights, Camera, Auction! (LCA), on Saturday, May 21, from 5-10 p.m., at Fairview Valley of the Moon in Oakmont. The theme is Saturday Night Fever, so everyone is encouraged to arrive in their grooviest disco attire.

“LCA is always fabulous. But this year will be extra-fabulous,” said Chad Wyatt, president of the KEF and the parent of two daughters, Carmen and Delilah, who attend Kenwood Elementary. The newly renovated venue will be fully decorated in the Saturday Night Fever theme and every ticket includes a cocktail reception, dinner, dancing, a full open bar, and an appearance by a special guest MC … “Our beloved former principal Bob Bales!”

The live and silent auction items are still rolling in, Wyatt said, but past items have included international getaways, unique dining experiences, premium wines, tours, and more. “This fundraiser is always a blast,” Wyatt noted, but the auction is most important because it raises the most money for students.

“I am amazed at how much money certain items will raise, and how many of those items come from the greater Kenwood, Sonoma Valley, and Santa Rosa communities,” Wyatt said. “Whether or not you attend, donating an auction item to LCA is a fantastic way to help our school. Terrific items include stays at a vacation rental out of the area, hosted dining experiences, tickets to sporting events, or tours of a unique destination. All donations can be made at our website,”

The Kenwood Education Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, provides financial support for Kenwood School, funding curriculum, programs, equipment, and books when little or no public funding is available for these items. LCA is the KEF’s most important fundraiser of the year, said Wyatt. “It raises about 75% of KEF’s annual budget, so its success is critical for Kenwood’s students. That is especially true this year, since COVID canceled our fundraiser in both 2020 and 2021, creating a significant financial deficit. Our students need us to come through for them this year.”

When Wyatt joined KEF, he said he was “surprised to learn that the state of California does not fund physical education, music, or STEAM curriculum (science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics) in our public schools.” Kenwood School, however, provides these programs for every student, which sets it apart from other public schools in the state. The programs are 100% funded by KEF, Wyatt said.

In addition to funding physical education, music, and STEAM, KEF also supports the school’s computer lab, library, school lunch program, and after-school care. “KEF even funds our valuable classroom instructional aides, who keep our teacher-to-student ratios very low, and our student achievement very high,” Wyatt said. KEF is a volunteer orgranization, so all donations are invested back into the small country school. All donations are tax deductible.

The event venue is located at 7035 Oakmont Dr. in Santa Rosa. To reserve individual tickets or purchase an entire table for a group of friends or an organization, go to Space is limited and this fundraiser always sells out, so buy tickets early. Everyone is welcome. For questions, email Wyatt at [email protected]