The 2017 Adult Prom Raised $145,000 For New 4-H Pavillion

The 4th Annual Elkhart County 4-H Fair Board Adult Prom Fundraiser was held Saturday, March 18, 2017 at Oakwood Resort Event Center, overlooking beautiful Lake Wawasee in Syracuse, and the event was another great success.

Doors opened at 5:30 p.m. and guests had an opportunity to socialize and bid online on more than four dozen silent-auction items before enjoying dinner.

The dinner buffet, provided by the culinary team at Oakwood Resort, featured grilled ribeye and blackened salmon.  Following dessert, Bryan Blair, general manager of the Elkhart County 4-H Fair, served as the Master of Ceremonies, welcoming the 560 guests in attendance and introducing more than 40 live auction items.

Vacation getaways, behind-the-scenes VIP fair experiences, sports memorabilia, electronics, designer handbags and furniture pieces were among the items sold to the highest bidders.

Brian Wuthrich, the event’s auctioneer representing Phil Hahn and Associates in Nappanee, was aided by auction clerks Dave and Bets Hahn.

In all, the event raised more than $145,000 to help the next big 4-H building at the fairgrounds.

Fair Board President Jill Garris said, “Because this fundraising committee wholeheartedly believes in and supports the 4-H program, we’re excited to announce that our next large project will be an open-air show pavilion.  This project has just been identified and many meetings with 4-H leaders will take place in the future to determine the design needs of the 4-H members and their club leaders.  Because of the size and scope of this project, it will likely be a multiyear fundraising effort, but we’re thrilled to identify and address the need.”

To date, some of the projects the first three adult proms helped fund include two new family restrooms, a grandstand expansion, fiber-optic data lines on the fairgrounds, a state-of-the-art public address and emergency siren system, a timber bridge to cross Rock Run Creek and a permanent roadway leading to C.R. 36 to the much-needed new entrance and exit which opened last year.

Following the live auction the 2017 Adult Prom Royalty were crowned by 2019 Fair Board President Josh Culp.  The 2017 king and queen were selected by a secret panel and crowned based on who represented the “Best Prom Spirit.” Bryan Blair was crowned along with his fiancee, Melissa Vincent. Following the coronation, Captured, a Journey tribute band, provided a lively and fun atmosphere while guests danced and enjoyed the remainder of the night.

Organized by co-chairs Cathy Hoogenboom and Shelly Steury, the entire fundraising committee contributed to the success of the annual fundraiser.  Toby Crowley, general manager of Lippert Components Inc. Plant 228, and a team of volunteers from Lippert assisted guests throughout the evening.  In early February, LCI announced their 100,000 hours of service campaign in which their 8,000 employees were challenged to donate 12.5 hours each year.  LCI, based in Elkhart, encourages their team members to volunteer to support healthy and safe communities.

To contribute to the open-air show pavilion building project, individuals or businesses may send a check to the Elkhart County 4-H Fair ATTN:  Adult Prom, 17746-D C.R. 34, Goshen, IN  46528.  No donation is too small or too large and every dollar secured will bring the project one step closer to completion.

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