Fund-raising marathon not quite finished yet | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Fund-raising marathon not quite finished yet

Peter Grant

“We’re in the stadium” has long been one of my favorite metaphors when struggling to remain focused and motivated during the final stages of a long and arduous task.

At the conclusion of a typical marathon, the runners re-enter the stadium to complete the final 500 yards or so of a 26.2-mile race. It is one of the most fascinating moments in all of sports, with each of the runners reacting uniquely to their own personal situation.

Some runners are energized by the crowd and the euphoria of the race as they near the end, sprinting to the finish. Others are racked with the agony of the long race and, seemingly deprived of the glory of the event, grimace and grind out each remaining step. Still others are broken and beaten, never making it to the finish line.

Support South Tahoe Athletic Teams is “in the stadium.” And while we remain energized and committed to completing the race, we need help. You see, this has always been a marathon based not just on time, but money too. Yes, it is good that the race is nearly over, but there is real concern now that we are running out of time.

Eight months ago the members of Support STAT determined $200,000 was needed by Jan. 14, 2005, to be paid out by various deadlines, to fully fund all sports at both the middle school and high school. Thus far, each season’s funding deadline has been met and paid in full, with only the spring sports remaining.

To date, Support STAT has raised nearly $170,000 by actively approaching businesses, service organizations, individuals and families. Over these final days we now need the community to come to us. Support STAT needs $30,000 over the next 30 days and, of course, we’ve got the holidays smack in the middle of all of this just to make things a bit more challenging.

Let’s be candid: At this point, we won’t get there with bake sales and car washes.

Tonight is STAT night at South Tahoe High School. Beginning at 7 p.m., at the start of the South Tahoe High School basketball game versus Bishop Manogue, Support STAT will be dedicating the STAR Donor Banner Wall of Fame and we think you’ll find it to be a rather impressive sight. Of the hundreds of individuals, businesses and service groups that have donated to STAT, these special banners recognize those who have contributed $1,000 or more, 35 banners thus far (you’ll note that there is plenty of room for more banners). We will celebrate the unprecedented success of the schools’ fall sports teams: nine out of nine teams making it to the playoffs and three middle-schoolers competing in the national cross country championships.

As my son would say, “That’s sick.”

We will also enjoy our wonderfully resurgent basketball and the other winter sports teams that are in full swing. But, let’s also be mindful that there are kids in those stands who play the spring sports – baseball, golf, softball, swimming and track and field – that are still wondering if they will be taking their respective fields in a few months.

Last night, a few Support STAT members met to review our various lists of businesses and individuals that we hope will soon have a banner on the wall of fame. We will be making many phone calls over the next few weeks and we hope you will take the time to speak with us. But you don’t have to wait to hear from us. You can contact Mark Garratt (775) 691-4000 or myself (775) 588-4544 or go to the Support STAT Web site, http://www.savestat.com for donor information. Need a write-off before the end of the year? Donations to Support STAT are fully deductible.

Enjoy the game.

– Peter Grant is a STAT committee member.


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