More than two dozen people attended a meeting last week to plan a “Celebrity Waiter” dinner Saturday, Jan. 30, to benefit the Rappahannock Benevolent Fund, which serves the needy of Rappahannock County.
The Fund makes emergency grants to Rappahannock citizens so they may obtain food, medicines, pay heating bills or make emergency home repairs, or for other necessities. The grants are normally payable to vendors and not directly to individual recipients. Most grants are less than $400, and grantees receive only a single grant. Since the Fund’s inception in December 2008, almost $60,000 in grants have been made. Referrals are welcomed from all the churches and service agencies in the county, including fire, rescue, and police.
The Benevolent Fund has been supported by contributions from individuals, which are matched by an anonymous donor. It is governed by a board consisting of the Reverends Jennings Hobson of Trinity Church; Philip Bailey of Washington Baptist Church and Jon Heddleston of Reynolds Memorial Baptist Church, as well as Sharon Pyne, of the Rappahannock County Social Services Department, and Sperryville resident Doug Schiffman. The Benevolent Fund incurs no overhead costs since administrative costs are covered by the churches and volunteers.
The Celebrity Waiter Dinner will raise additional funds, also to be matched by the anonymous donor. Twenty-five local celebrities (some with assistants) will serve dinner at the Link from 6:30 to about 9:30. The celebrities are responsible for selling the seats at their tables. There will be eight or nine people at a table, and tickets are $50 each.
In addition to selling tickets, the waiters have complete discretion as to how the table will work. They may have a theme. Guests may be asked to donate a flat fee in addition to their ticket price. They may be asked to “pay” for items during the evening—for example, their fork, glass, plate, etc. Waiters may be asked to perform (sing, dance, recite poetry) for a fee paid by the guests. Tables may challenge another table/waiter. Waiters may prepare appetizers/drinks to sell to their table or another table. And the list goes on and on. Any ideas to raise money will be welcome. There will also be other entertainment.
Organizing the event are the Benevolent Fund Support Group members Alice Anderson, Beverly Atkins, Delma Bagley, Georgia Gilpin, Bette Mahoney and Sharon Pyne, assisted by many others.
Tickets are available from the waiters or by calling Beverly Atkins at 540-675-3843 or Delma Bagley at 987-8604, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.