Saturday: Raising $300,000 for local schools


The nonprofit foundation supporting schools in the Menlo Park City School District is hosting it annual party and auction -- its largest fundraising event of the year -- on Saturday, April 9.

"Rock the Foundation" begins at 7 p.m. at the Cabana Crowne Plaza Hotel in Palo Alto, with "VIP" ticket-buyers invited to a 6 p.m. warm-up event that includes early bidding in the silent auction.

The Menlo Park-Atherton Education Foundation hopes to raise at least $300,000 at the event, according to foundation co-president Alison Leupold. The goal is to raise $100,000 of that amount during the "Fund a Teacher" portion of the benefit, which this year is slated to go toward funding teachers in the art and music programs, she said.

Participants in the open auction can bid on items in categories ranging from get-aways, dinners and fine wine to sports memorabilia and tickets to athletic events. The auction is set to begin at 8 p.m., as the silent auction begins to close.

Dancing to the music of Pride & Joy begins at 9 p.m. There will be an open bar and a variety of foods to snack on during the event.

Tickets are $120 for general admission and $185 for VIP admission.

Go to and click on "Auction" to order tickets. You can see the auction catalog and learn more about the event on the website.

Over the years, the foundation has raised millions of dollars for the district's schools: Laurel, Encinal, Oak Knoll, and Hillview. Ms. Leupold said that last year the foundation's contribution constituted 8 percent of the district's budget, and this year, members hope to grant $2.5 million to the schools.

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