By LILY TINOCO | Reporter
Families, teachers and community members gathered virtually Saturday evening, February 20, to support the Paul Revere Charter Middle School annual fundraising auction.
The auction committee, led by parents Jamee Natella and Paula Lewis, consisted of 28 volunteers—all moms from Paul Revere. The team was dedicated to creating an ’80s-themed, virtual experience for all.
Natella and Lewis said the event was a true team effort—from acquiring auction items to working with the school to identify specific needs for which to raise funds and working with Natella’s production company to produce a show that was “top notch.”
In previous years the event had been described as a gala fundraiser, with more than 100 local attendees who would gather at the Pacific Palisades Woman’s Club. This year’s virtual event boasted over 700 families on a Zoom, allowing for wider participation from families all over the greater Los Angeles area.
“We wanted to be sensitive to how the times have impacted everyone differently and to acknowledge those who have been hit hard by the pandemic,” Lewis said.
Participants were invited to purchase VIP packages ahead of the main event, including a dinner package, “happy hour” package or interactive experience with magician and mentalist Rmax Goodwin.
During the event, Natella said the community’s funding is vital for the school’s animals and agriculture, one-on-one technology offerings, and in turn, supports the “most special magnet and gifted children in our school.”
Funds raised will also support a number of school programs and renovations, including Paul Revere’s theater program, a student-designed mural and more.
“We were able to address the current climate affecting our public schools … while raising the funds necessary to maintain our facilities, provide teaching and student materials [and] preparations to safely return to campus,” Natella said to the Palisadian-Post.
“The primary goal of the evening, along with raising funds, was to help the community carry on through these difficult times,” Lewis added.
Last year’s event, which was attended by nearly 300 people, raised close to $85,000 for the school through live and silent auctions.
The auction remained open until Tuesday, February 23. As the Post went to print Tuesday evening, Paul Revere had raised more than $70,000 of its $100,000 goal.
“As many schools canceled their auctions, we really wanted to bring our community together again and just have a fun night going back to the ’80s,” Natella said.
“We hope the night offered some fun, laughter and hope for better times ahead,” Lewis concluded.
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