CATALDO — For more than 60 years, the students and staff of Canyon Elementary School have held a ham and turkey dinner on Saturday to help raise funds for their school.
Starting roughly around 1946, the event began and still is the school’s primary fundraiser. While the proceeds from the dinner have always gone directly toward what the school has needed, those specific needs change over time.
Event organizer Jennifer Ferguson explains that the funds raised at this year’s event will go toward funding the school’s Tinker Tech lab, “science Friday” workshops, field trips, Santa’s secret shop, and many other activities.
“This year, we are very excited to have the Missoula Children’s Theater come in for a weeklong workshop that will culminate in a live production of Gulliver’s Travels performed by the students.”
As it has been in the past, the dinner will provide attendees with plenty to eat and bid on in both silent and live auctions.
A staple item of the ham and turkey auctions has been a handmade quilt donated to the school. This year’s quilt was crafted by Bonnie Farmin, who used artwork from students and transformed them into a “I Spy, Friendship Star quilt.”
The event will also have some new activities on top of the tried and tested ones.
Students will have “cities” that they created on display in the Tinker Tech lab for attendees to see.
“The lab is a creator/maker space where kids can flex their imagination and create everything from robots to computer generated images brought to ‘life’ using our 3D printer,” Ferguson explained.
Every bit of this annual event is a labor of love for its organizers and contributors. Even the food for the dinner is provided by generous donors who want to support the small school.
“Scheffelmier meats donates the smoked hams, the Rose Lake Restaurant cooks all the turkey and makes the stuffing from scratch. Our awesome cook, Debbie Mann makes homemade rolls; it is amazing!” Ferguson said.
The entire Canyon School Organization, who put on the dinner, agree that the best part of the event is the sense of community it gives people and seeing the incredible support and participation it receives.
The ham and turkey dinner will be held on Nov. 23 from 4-6 p.m. in the school gym. Canyon Elementary is located at 27491 E. Schoolhouse Loop in Cataldo.
For more information on the event and items in the auctions, visit the Canyon Elementary Ham & Turkey page on Facebook.