Dear Bedminster School families and friends,
It was Thursday, October 25, when I received a text message stating that the Bedminster Charities Fall Fest committee was asking for the PTO's vote as to whether or not to cancel this year's event, or, go forward as planned......
The week leading up to October 27, we were hearing there was a chance of a nor'easter, but we were optimistic Mother Nature would be on our side. Bedminster Charities Fall Fest is such an amazing event. It brings together the families and friends of our little town where kids can jump in bounce houses with their buddies, music from local bands drifts through the air and moms get excited over the silent auction bids they put down. New this year was to be the Halloween Costume contest for adults, kids and our little furry friends too. The PTO was prepping for a fun day as well. Our 'Bedminster Bulldog' pumpkin was painted in school colors and ready for the 'guess the weight' contest. We were excited for our friends to visit our tent and make their car magnet and PTO membership purchases. Months of planning was all about to finally be seen and excitement was just around the corner. Then the text message was received.
To be honest, making the decision to cancel Fall Fest wasn't very hard, but let me explain why. The nor'easter we were expected to have was predicting 40-60 mph winds and there was no way I would put our Bulldog families in harms way. My reply text read, "for the Bedminster School PTO, I vote to cancel the event". The second text message I sent was to the other Executive Board members informing them of the outcome, I was heartbroken. With Fall Fest being cancelled, it meant all seven charities would lose out on thousands of dollars, and with all 7 being non-profit organizations this would be a tremendous blow for each of us as we all rely on donations to get us through the year. Ultimately for the PTO, this meant we would not be receiving our share of the proceeds which in previous years was approximately $6,000.
During the first few months of school, we brought in 3 amazing assemblies to kick off the year. We hosted the 'All In' motivational speakers, a BMX Stunt Team and the Hip Hop Dance assembly. For the 2nd half of the year we have 3 additional assemblies that we have committed to and are already scheduled. Field trip busing grant requests and invoices have already started coming in. Teacher grants and grade level programs have been approved by Administration and submitted to the PTO as well. In the early Spring we generally receive multiple requests from school clubs asking for our assistance in some way or another. Our Spring Fling Committee has already started the wheels in motion by acquiring our raffle licenses and securing our event space with a down payment. With this significant loss in funds the remaining seven months of school will be a struggle for us.
The PTO has always been able to approve every request that has come our way, we have always been able to help our teachers and students when they've asked, and truth be told, we want to continue in the same direction.
Over the past three weeks, the PTO Executive Board has met numerous times to try to figure out a solution and we think we have come up with an idea that is both simplistic and has the possibility to help us tremendously. So, here we are going over our bank account and realizing we won't be able to fund all these marvelous assemblies, bus trips and grants for our children without your additional help. Spring Fling is our biggest and most profitable fundraiser and we are hoping beyond hope that it will be again this coming April. However, April is six months away and we need your help now. The Bedminster Township School PTO has decided to hold a 'Fall Fest Fallout Fundraiser'. If you can help us continue the programs and grants that I mentioned above, we would appreciate any monetary donation you could give and all donation amounts will be kept confidential.
With your donation we will be able to continue what the PTO does best, enriching the lives of every student at Bedminster Twp. School.
It is with sincere hope that during this rough patch we can come together to get back to where we should be and then after an amazing 20th Anniversary Spring Fling we can look back at this time and it will be a distant memory. From there, we can continue looking forward to amazing school years ahead.
If you are able to help, any amount would be appreciated. Please make checks payable to 'Bedminster School PTO' and they can be sent into school in an envelope marked 'PTO' or they can be mailed to: Bedminster Twp. School Attn: PTO, 234 Somerville Road, Bedminster, NJ, 07921. All donations are tax deductible. Please speak with your accountant and/or financial adviser for more details.
With extreme gratitude,
Checks can be mailed to:
Bedminster Twp School
234 Somerville Road
Bedminster, NJ, 07921
Bedminster Charities Fall
Fest Silent Auction
Ends 10 pm Friday November 30