By Arwyn Rice
Peninsula Daily News
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LAPUSH — More than 450 families will benefit from the 12th annual Cherish our Children fundraiser event from 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. today (Friday) at the A-Ka-Lat Community Center.
The evening will begin at 5 p.m. with a children's choir, followed by a 6 p.m. silent auction, a children's auction and a spirited live auction.
The intense bidding of the live auction provides plenty of entertainment, said Anne Stallard, a founder of the fundraising event.
“Some people will pay $200 for a pie,” she said.
The tradition began at a drum circle, with a few women talking about the problems families face during the holidays, she said.
It began small and grew quickly.
Stallard said that at the first dinner, the same people managed the kitchen and the auction.
“We've grown too big for that,” she said, and added that each has its own full staff to keep the night moving smoothly.
Proceeds from the dinner and auction support gift-giving programs in Forks and LaPush. The gifts are split evenly between the two communities.
In Forks, the food bank sponsors the Santa's Workshop program, which allows financially struggling families to select gifts for each child.
In LaPush, the Quileute Housing Authority's program provides gifts for children of low-income families in the community.
Reporter Arwyn Rice can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5070, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.