Tickets are now available at local banks for the Grove Education Foundation for Excellence (GEFFE) Gala, set for April 5, 2008, at the Royal Bay Yacht Club.  A few corporate tables are also still available.  Individual tickets are $75 and corporate tables, which include seating for 8, are $575.  The banquet, which includes a live and silent auction, is the primary fundraising event for the organization.  

“Once again this year our generous donors have stepped forward to purchase corporate tables, so seating is already becoming limited,” said Kristi Wallace, GEFFE President.  “People interested in attending the Gala should purchase their tickets as soon as possible.”

Numerous items will be up for grabs during the live auction including two tickets to the Celine Dion concent at the new BOK Center in Tulsa.  The package, which was donated by Grand Escapes Travel and GoodToGo With PattiBeth, also includes transportation to and from Tulsa by motorcoach, and dinner at Charleston’s.   Other items include Invisalign braces, donated by Grove Dental Associates, flowers and chocolate for a year, donated by Floral Expressions by Rebecca and Java Dave’s, and five live trees, donated by Honey Creek Nursery Wholesale.  Bargain Center has donated a 50” LG flat screen television set for the live auction.

Once again this year, famed local fisherman Darrell Robertson has donated a guided bass fishing trip for two to the live auction. Robertson, who as a professional bass fisherman has won over $1 million in tournaments in the past few years, has been a frequent donor to the GEFFE Gala.

For those more interested in hunting than fishing, there’s a guided pheasant hunt for four in the Oklahoma panhandle.  Donated by Dave Jones and Steve Shirley, the package includes lodging, transportation, meals, great dog work and lots of fun.  Shirley has been a featured guide in Field and Stream, Outdoor Life, Oklahoma Outdoors, and many other national and local publications.

 “As always, we will also have numerous items in our silent auction,” Wallace noted.  “We have received many wonderful donations from Grove businesses and we really appreciate their support.  Many of our supporters have been donating items for our auction since our first fundraiser in 1998.  We can’t thank them enough for their continual generosity.”

Silent auction items include baskets of goodies from The Wax Bucket, a nautical lamp from Picture Framing N’ More, and a statute of two children from Dee Siegenthaler and Creative Concepts.  

Donations are still being accepted for both the live or silent auction.  Businesses wishing to donate an item for either auction can contact Kay Lyn Beauchamp at 787-5540.  Persons wishing to purchase a table can call Heather Elmburg at 918-533-1360.

Money raised at the banquet is given back to the Grove School District in the form of grants to the school.  Teachers and principals submit grants to GEFFE requesting for various educational projects.  During the past ten years, GEFFE has awarded over $300,000 in grants to the school district.