Mardi Gras breakfast benefits area schools

“Laissez le Bon Ton Roulez!”

Enumclaw Schools Foundation President Nancy Merrill said that’s Cajun French for “Let the fun begin!” and follows the theme for the group’s inaugural Mardi Gras benefit breakfast.

Jazzing Up Education is scheduled for 7:30 to 9 a.m. March 8 at the Enumclaw Expo Center fieldhouse.

The independent nonprofit organization’s growing board of directors, made up of Enumclaw and Black Diamond community members, plans to use the event to build partnerships with corporations, organizations and individuals enhancing educational opportunities for students of the Enumclaw School District.

“We hope to fill the room,” said Jeanette Bull, who is co-chairing the event with Dianna Perry, who serves as ESF secretary. “We have our fingers firmly crossed.”

Part of the Mardi Gras breakfast will highlight ESF’s inaugural grant recipients.

In November, the ESF awarded five Enrichment and Innovation Grants totaling almost $3,800, nearly its entire budget at the time.

Those receiving grants were: Black Diamond Elementary to bring author Roland Smith to the school; Enumclaw High School to purchase books to supplement the reading curriculum in 10th-grade English classes; Westwood Elementary for supplemental materials in English and Spanish to support student reading with their parents at home; Southwood Elementary to purchase visual arts supplies to enhance reading for students; and Sunrise Elementary to purchase a one-year subscription to Bookflix, an on-line interactive resource for students.

Funding for the first round of grants came from United Way contributions, primarily from district employees. Any United Way donor may contribute toward next year’s grants by designating “Enumclaw Schools Foundation EIN No. 59-3830191” as recipient of their United Way contribution form.

The next grant process is slated to begin soon. The timeline will be announced at the Mardi Gras breakfast.

Also in November, ESF launched its website,, where individuals can learn more about the program, and take advantage of the opportunity to shop and have a portion of each sale be credited to the ESF for future grants.

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