United Way will hold March Madness event

United Way of Southwest Colorado has announced that its annual fund-raising drive for Archuleta County conducted last fall and winter exceeded its goal. A total of $71,919 was pledged to United Way.

Donations and pledges to United Way’s annual campaign are used to fund nonprofit organizations in Archuleta County. Prior to beginning the fund-raising, a team of volunteers evaluated local nonprofit organizations and recommended a funding amount for 15 groups. These funding amounts formed the core of the annual campaign goal.

The Springs Resort & Spa hosted the campaign celebration event and was acknowledged for continued support to the 2008/2009 campaign. After United Way announced its campaign total, 31 awards were given out to supporters of the fund-raising drive. This year, two new major business supporters conducted corporate campaigns contributing major donations towards the goal: Pagosa Mountain Hospital (Upper San Juan Health District) and DeClark Granite and Fabrication. Citizens Bank received the award for the business with the largest increase in giving. LPEA received two awards: Business with the highest average employee gift and 2008/2009 Outstanding Business Supporter Award. Wolf Creek Ski Area received United Way’s Community Spirit Award.

United Way presented Special recognition to the following persons:

Chairperson of the 2008 Archuleta County Advisory Council: Terri House; outgoing Advisory Council members Terri House, Lisa Scott and Cherlyn Gwin; 2008/2009 Community Campaign chairs Jack and Katy Threet; CEO United Way of Southwest Colorado: Tim Walsworth; Archuleta County Council member and representative to the regional United Way of Southwest Colorado Board of Directors, Dick Babillis.

A number of Partner Agencies had 100-percent employee participation: Archuleta County Education Center; Archuleta County Victim Assistance Program; and Seeds of Learning.

The business with the largest increase in giving was Citizens Bank.

The Business with the highest average employee donations was Pagosa Springs Golf Club. Troy Persson hosted the 2008 Golf Tournament.

Our 2008 Party Round Pagosa hosts and hostesses were Karl and Kathy Isberg, Tom and Ming Steen, Bob and Lisa Scott, Reid and Lisa Kelly, Chris and Dawn Truax, Dick and Mary Bond, and Frank and Robin Schiro.

United Way of Southwest Colorado’s 2009 Partner Agencies will receive funding from United Way in 2009 due to the success of the fund-raising drive. They include American Red Cross, Southwest Colorado Chapter, Archuleta County Education Center, Archuleta County Victim Assistance Program, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Colorado Housing, Inc., Great Southwest Council-Boy Scouts of America, Girl Scouts of Colorado, Habitat for Humanity, Housing Solutions for the Southwest, Pagosa Outreach Connection, San Juan Basin Area on Aging, San Juan Basin Health Department, Seeds of Learning, Southwest Conservation Corps, and Volunteers of America Colorado Branch.

Our United Way of Archuleta County Advisory Council Members 2009 are: David Musser, chairperson; Cindi Galabota, agency representative; Dick Babillis, board liaison, Carolyn Warsawski, Tom Steen, Ming Steen, Codie Wilson, Livia Lynch, Carol Baker and John Weiss.

March Madness

Even though one goal is exceeded, the need to raise funds continues. The NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments are one of the best sports viewing events of the year. This year, United Way of Southwest Colorado, Pagosa Brewing Company and La Plata Electric Association are teaming up to host the first-ever March Madness fund-raiser on Thursday, March 26 ,from 5 to 7 p.m.

The event will be held at the Pagosa Brewing Company, 100 N. Pagosa Blvd. An optional donation to United Way will be accepted at the door. Free appetizers will be provided by Farrago’s Market Café and the Alley House Grille for all who attend for the first hour, from 5 to 6 p.m. All proceeds from sale of a select beer will be donated back to United Way of Southwest Colorado in Archuleta County.

In keeping with the March Madness theme, attendees will be able to watch the Sweet 16 games that will be played on this evening. There will also be a bracket challenge, a nerf hoops contest, a fanatic fan contest (best basketball fan outfit), and a basketball coloring contest for the kids. Prizes will be awarded to the winners.

Limited indoor VIP seating is available. The best seats in the house are being sold for $100 for a six-person table and $75 for a four-person table (six tables total). These tables not only guarantee a great view of the action, but also include free appetizers for the entire two-hour event. Contact Karen Davison at United Way to reserve a table by calling 264-1215.

La Plata Electric Association is organizing this event for the benefit of United Way. Call Jeannie Bennett at La Plata Electric Association at 382-3505 for more information. All proceeds will benefit people in need in Archuleta County through the work of United Way’s local partner agencies.