Despite the gloomy weather, the held at on Sunday proved a success, raising more than $15,000 for the .
The festival showcased many talented First Avenue students including the school’s award-winning band, orchestra and chorus.
First Avenue teachers joined in the fun by willingly letting students pelt them with pies at the pie-throwing booth. Dunk tanks were also a big hit as kids lined up for a chance to knock their favorite teachers into water that was surely chilly.
The festival's silent auction included items such as dinner with Principal Jeff Wilson and Assistant Principal Semeen Issa and eight others catered by First Avenue teachers and staff that went for $300. Laser tag and dinner for four with four teachers went for $240. A three-day, two-night stay at a cabin in Big Bear went for $250.
First Avenue PTSA President Vicky Stiles and a planning committee made up of First Avenue parents Theresia Liem, Terri Powell, Maryann Stevens, Doris Hayata, Judy Lee and Ron Gutierrez organized Sunday's festival.
Stiles said Principal Wilson, Assistant Principal Issa, and office manger Randy Weir were also integral in helping pull off the festival.
The increased fund-raising effort by AUSD schools comes at a time when the district faces the brunt of the much-discussed state budget crisis. in March and the district is facing a $349 per student reduction, roughly $3.1 million overall, in funding for the 2011-2012 school year.
AEF gifts all the money it raises to AUSD. So far, the organization's fund-raising efforts have saved nine teacher positions.
AEF, which has already raised more than $650,000 in the past year, could add to its haul by winning the . You can vote for AEF by clicking here. Voting ends Wednesday, May 25.
Special thanks to Maryann Stevens and Theresia Liem for providing photos of the event.