CASSTOWN — The viking spirit descended upon the Miami East Local School District on Saturday as “VikingFest” returned for a day of community fun.
General admission to the event was free to the public, with various “pay-to-play” activities throughout the festival.
Now in its twelfth year, VikingFest is a community fundraiser sponsored by the Miami East Education Foundation (MEEF). Proceeds from the event benefit the foundation’s student scholarships and learning grants, along with other participating school groups.
According to co-chairperson Beth Culbertson, last year’s VikingFest brought in over $12,000 in funds.
“When we first started the fundraiser, we wanted something that would be community-wide and appeal to all ages,” Culbertson said. “Everybody always remembered their school carnivals, so our goal was to create something like that for everyone.”
Across the five-hour event, VikingFest featured baking contests and sales, a silent auctions featuring gift cards and items donated from local organizations, a variety of live stage entertainment, arts and crafts, a free student art show, midway carnival games, a cake walk, and an escape room.
Food was available for purchase, sponsored by the Miami East After-Prom Committee, Miami East Alumni sno-cones and popcorn, and a coffee bar provided by MEEF.
This year’s festival added a “ga-ga pit,” which allowed kids to play monitored rounds of ga-ga ball in the gymnasium. Special antique appraisals were also added as a feature for 2019.
“We always try to make the next one bigger and better than the present one,” Culbertson said. “We’ve grown a lot since the first year. We’ll sit down in March to evaluate this festival, and see what we can do for next year.”
Founded in 2004 after approval from the Miami East Board of Education, the Miami East Education Foundation exists to provide financial support not available through public funds, and support the enrichment of Miami East students through scholarships and school personnel grants. To date, the Foundation has awarded over $125,000 in scholarships and grants.
For more information, visit www.miamieast.k12.oh.us.