A Bake-Sale Building: Sleeves Rolled Up, Dough Rolled Out

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School officials in one small Virginia community have the satisfaction of having tapped good will rather than tagged tax bills to produce a new school this fall.

In Colonial Beach, a town of 2,500 on the Potomac River, the new high school was built in a novel way--with bake sales, raffle tickets, and other fundraisers.

"The town would have had to increase taxes to build it otherwise," said Barbara Worrell, director of finance at the Colonial Beach School District. "That's what we were trying to keep to a minimum. We have a lot of senior citizens who live on a fixed income."

The new high school opened in September, four years after the formation of a foundation to raise funds to build it.

"I doubt if there is any fundraising method that wasn't used," said Wayne Kennedy, a teacher and coach at the school.

Colonial Beach residents rallied around the cause. Someone donated a piece of property, which was sold for $14,000. The new owner donated it right back and the foundation built a house on the lot, selling it for a $20,000 profit.

The foundation has set a goal of $650,000, which will be invested to pay off $1.2 million in interest on a state loan used to build the school. More than $550,000 has been pledged or donated so far.

"We've had a lot of help from people who have been pleased we rolled up our sleeves and did this ourselves," said Mr. Kennedy.


Vol. 08, Issue 10

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