Football Tailgate Party kicks off Homecoming game

October 6, 2008 — by Karen Lyu

Saratoga Sports Boosters introduced a new fundraising event this year, called the Football Tailgate. It was held on Oct. 3 on the evening of the Homecoming game.

The social started at 4:30 p.m. Tickets cost $20 for one meal and game ticket, and $60 for an entire package. This covered a reserved parking space, dinner for two, and two tickets to the game. An option for three guests was also available for $75. Dinner included a full meal: tri-tip sandwiches or veggie wraps, a drink, cole slaw, baked beans, corn on the cob, and apple pie.

Paula Thoren, head of fundraising for the Sports Boosters, hopes that it will become an annual tradition, alongside the school’s other homecoming festivities.

“People will see [others] sitting out there, having a great time. Even if they don’t sign up this year, they’ll see it and want to sign up next year,” Thoren said. “I think it’ll be fun.”

Sports Boosters has supported athletics at Saratoga High for 28 years. The group’s goal each year is to raise at least $120,000. In years past, their funds surpassed expectations and reached almost $170,000. Recent years have had a decreasing success. They hoped tailgate would earn at least $10,000.

“[In previous years], we have had an annual auction. We only bring in money through the auction and through [booster] memberships. But this year, instead of the auction, we’re going to do several different events,” said Thoren. “The tailgate is only the first.”

Sports Boosters pays for everything from teams’ assistant coaches, uniforms and equipment to providing for the weight room and weight trainers.

“If you took the average cost per student per sport, it is more than $400. So we need to raise about $200 per student,” said Thoren. “If we don’t raise the money, [the students] don’t get what they need.”

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