October 2021 Have you heard the good news? ZEF Bash 2021 is coming back and is returning to its traditional in-person program! But before we get into what’s new this year and why you can’t miss this year’s fundraiser for the Zionsville Education Foundation (ZEF), let’s take a moment to recognize how hard the ZEF Bash chairs and committee worked at raising some coin last year—amid a global pandemic where we all lived in a virtual existence for the better part of a year. ZEF Executive Director Lyle Browne reported, “Thanks to the generosity of our community and a hard-working committee, last year’s Trivia Night raised $88,000. The winning trivia team was League of Extraordinary Guessers—led by Mike and Tracy Coussens with Ike and Jennie Means, Mary Ann Morris, Tracy and Brian Vermillion and Christina Gibson.” In Case You’re Wondering What ZEF Is… The mission of the Zionsville Education Foundation (ZEF) is to serve the school community by providing funds that promote academic excellence. ZEF's vision is to partner with the school community to instill in students a lifelong desire for knowledge. Over the last 25 years, ZEF has awarded $1.5 million in grants to educators and students in Zionsville Community Schools (ZCS). In 2020, ZEF awarded more than $127,000 in grants to ZCS. The generosity of ZEF’s donors benefited more than 7,600 students and 465 teachers through grant funding from ZEF. ZCS is the lowest-funded public school district per student in the state of Indiana. ZEF funds innovative classroom projects, professional development for teachers and student experiences not otherwise available to educators and students. Your sponsorship and/or donation is an investment in public education, granting resources not available to our school community through tax dollars. These dollars can only be replaced through the generosity of the community’s corporate, small business and individual donors. And as the school district continues to grow, it will be even more critical that ZEF grows its donations alongside the schools in order to keep the continuum of financial support going. All Together Again! The co-chairs of the 2021 ZEF Bash are Zionsville residents Audra Poe and Sarah King. And like Browne, the entire ZEF Bash committee is thrilled to have everyone back together at the Cardinal Room at the Golf Club of Indiana on Saturday, Nov. 6, 2021. The ZEF Bash (formerly known as ZEF Barn Bash) will kick off its festivities at 5:30 p.m. with a VIP Reception, followed by the doors opening to the general public at 6:30 p.m. The attire is casual but there is a theme! “Show Your School Spirit” is this year’s overarching theme. It’s time to show your school spirit! Therefore, full-body eagle costumes are not frowned upon by the establishment—go big or stay home! “We are so excited to bring people back together—in person—again,” Browne expressed. “We will spend some time celebrating all the amazing things that our schools do on a daily basis and what they were able to do during some really tough times. The VIP Reception will have some special musical entertainment, and the event will begin in full force at 6:30 p.m., where everybody will enjoy dinner and reconnect with friends that they may not have seen in a long time. We’ll have the band Dave and Rae as the main entertainment for that portion of the evening. We’re going to have dancing, a silent auction and a gift card pull. The gift card pull will be $20 to pull a card that will be worth at least $20 or as much as $100, donated by local businesses.” Browne expressed her gratitude for the continued support of the staff at the Cardinal Room, the event’s premier sponsors: Barnes & Thornburg and Skillman Corporation. And of course, Browne and the ZEF Bash chairs wished to express their gratitude to ALL their sponsors and donors for their continued support. “Gratitude is the first thing that comes to mind,” Browne said. “We’re just incredibly grateful to our sponsors and donors for what they enable us to do at this event but really for what they enable us to do when we award grants to teachers. We simply couldn’t do it without the combination of corporate sponsors, individuals, family foundations and our small businesses. ZEF Bash is really a community event, and our sponsors are a huge part of that. We are also grateful for the teachers and administrators who work really hard to make it all happen for our students.” Don’t wait another minute longer—purchase your tickets at zionsvilleeducationfoundation.org.