Going, going once

The Grand Haven High School Symphony Orchestra and Chamber Choir’s “Trip of a Lifetime” is just a month away, and the last event to raise money to pay the way is Friday night.
Mark Brooky
Feb 25, 2013


Nearly 90 orchestra and choir students will be performing at Carnegie Hall in New York City, and then traveling to Europe for performances during the upcoming spring break week. To get there, it’s costing each student and each chaperone $3,200.

Silent and live auctions of a wide array of gift cards and packages, artwork, sports memorabilia, vacations, furniture, and more will take place at the Grand Hall of Harbourfront Place, 41 Washington Ave. in downtown Grand Haven, from 7-11 p.m. Friday. All proceeds go the students’ trip funds.

“This is our last big fundraiser for the trip,” said Melissa Meyers, the high school’s orchestra director.

Since June 2012, the students have washed and parked cars, wrapped Christmas gifts, performed music, and hosted a fancy dinner to raise funds.

Meyers and the school’s choir director, Shirley Lemon, will be leading the group on the trip, March 30 to April 8. Among the chaperones is the Grand Haven middle school orchestra director, Tatyana Walters, who is organizing the auction.

“We had some fun planning this event,” Walters said.

Here are just a few of the many items attendees will have the opportunity to bid on: a basketball signed by Michigan State coach Tom Izzo and a football signed by MSU coach Mark Dantonio, charter boat fishing cruise, a couple of golf packages, packages to see the Whitecaps and Griffins, Grand Rapids Symphony “Lollipops” concert family package, music lessons by a member of the Grand Rapids Symphony, a photo session with Suzy Hendrickson, men’s and women’s designer sunglasses and eye exam from Shoreline Optical, $300 in labor from Brugger House Builders, a half-day boat rental, and several music instruments turned into art by local artists.

The event will also include live music, appetizers, a cash bar and a 50/50 raffle.

Tickets are $15, or $25 per couple. They are available at the Grand Haven Education Service Center, 1415 S. Beechtree St.; and The Bookman, 715 Washington Ave. They will also be available at the door.

For information, e-mail Tatyana Walters at walterst@ghaps.org.




Sorry, I'm saving to pay my increased Michigan state taxes. $3200 per student with 90 students going, that's over a quarter million dollars! With the food lines at St. Patrick's Church I think that amount of money could be used for better local purposes than sending kids to Europe.


"Unrepresented", with your logic no one should be permitted to travel or dream? And by the way they are going to New York as well on this trip.

We all know many are struggling, there always have been and will be people who unfortunately struggle. The vast majority of the cost is funded by the families and the kids who worked very hard at many fundraising opportunities. And the support from the Grand Haven community has been incredible.

The Orchestra and Choir directors and staff who have organized this on are to be commended for making this tremendous learning and cultural opportunity available. These students will be working very hard during this trip performing on several occasions while learing from professionals as well. Grand Haven will be well represented shedding light on how great this community is.

Also, over the years many of these students have spent time during school learning about service and have stood in the lines at St. Patrick's helping people get food. The students learned this service by the very people who are organizing this trip. These instructors are excellent role models and are molding our students into excellent young citizens who value and support our community.

You don't have to be sorry as you save to pay increased Michigan State taxes about not supporting this fundraiser. No one expects everyone to participate or support this cause or any cause. But you would be surprised by how many people do support this great opportunity for the students. And I'm confident that most of those who did continue to support all the wonderful charities in Grand Haven.

By the way, don't forget about the impact of the extra Social Security taxes and healthcare costs this year. We all pay this as well.


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