CougarFest


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Budgets are tight, and just about everyone has to come up with new ideas to generate funds. That includes the Valley View School District Board of Education and the 13 different “booster” organizations that exist to make sure any help various student activities and sports make it through any financial difficulties.

The groups joined forces, did a little brainstorming and the result was the Cougar Family Carnival, which will be held Friday through Monday, Aug. 30 to Sept. 2, at the John F. Henzes Veterans Memorial Stadium in Peckville. The event will feature rides, games, food and a celebrity dunk tank.

The carnival idea first came to Valley View board member Dominick Perini, who has extensive experience in this arena after years as carnival coordinator for the Jessup Hose Co. during the St. Ubaldo festivities. He ran the idea by board president Ellen Nielsen, who urged him to make a presentation to the board at the July work session. Superintendent Donald Kanavy gave his approval and plans got underway.

Perini stressed that this has been a collaborative effort on the part of the administration, the parent booster clubs and the faculty. The participating parent booster clubs will each receive an equal share of the profits from the event. The proceeds will then be used for the benefit of the students in each organization. Any money generated for the school district will be placed in the general fund.

The booster organizations drew up a menu, organized games and basket raffles, rounded up volunteers from the faculty and the student body, and recruited “celebrity” volunteers to sit in the dunk tank. The Midway rides and amusements are provided by S&S Amusements.

“Our booster groups pulled together, enlisted the aid of both parents and faculty, and presented a really workable model for success,” said Nielsen.

“What have we got to lose? Nothing,” Perini said. “What have we got to gain? A great sense of camaraderie.”

The carnival will be open from 6 to 11 p.m. on Friday, and 2 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Admission is free; attendees will pay a one-time $10 fee to ride the rides.

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