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'Gorge Grape Escape' school fundraiser to benefit White Salmon

Tickets on sale now

Tickets are now on sale for the second annual "Gorge Grape Escape." This year's event is sponsored by the White Salmon Valley Education Foundation (WSVEF), with all proceeds going to supplement programs and curriculums at local schools.

Entry to this event gives you the chance to taste newly released wines, purchase unique works by area artists and school children, and score great sporting gear and getaways.

The fundraising event will be held at the Hood River Inn on Saturday, Feb. 16. Tickets are $40 per person, or purchase an entire table and make a very special evening of it with friends or family.

Last year's event raised $29,000, and organizers hope this year's silent and live auctions will boost that number even higher. A wide array of items are up for bid, such as a NorthSports Kiteboard setup or his-and-her Scott bikes; hand-painted magnums filled with Gorge wine; and original works of art by Ellen Ditterbrandt, Judith Cunningham, and Mark Nilsson. Or be a high bidder and soar high over the Gorge on your own personal airplane adventure.

Tickets are available on-line at or at Waucoma Bookstore, Collage of the Gorge, The Hood River Inn, Whitson Elementary School, or Henkle Middle School.

All proceeds benefit WSVEF, a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation dedicated to enhancing the quality of public education within our community by creating a stable source of supplemental funding for education enhancement.

Volunteers are needed to help out with the event. If you're interested, contact Jo Matson at

If you can't make the Grape Escape, you can still make a difference in public education. The WSVEF's Founder's Drive runs though April 10. Everybody who contributes before then will receive recognition as a Founding Member of the organization.

At least 25 percent of each contribution goes to an endowment fund that will extend the work of the WSVEF for future generations. The remaining amount is used to fund bi-annual grants. Recipients will be announced soon.

The Foundation has received a generous gift of $50,000 from Wallace and Priscilla Stevenson already. This gift can be renewed annually for two years if $50,000 in matching funds are raised in each of those years. By meeting this challenge, the community can gain $250,000 in new funding by spring of 2008.


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