APS Column: Come play FORE the kids!

Published 5:27 pm Friday, May 26, 2023

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By Carolyn Dube

Austin Public Education Foundation Board Member

This year, the Austin Public Education Foundation (APEF) celebrates its 25th annual Packer Classic Golf Tournament. Held at the Austin Country Club, the Packer Classic has been a summer tradition to support public education in Austin. 

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This year we are going big with an evening gala celebration on Sunday, July 16, beginning at 5 p.m. A social hour and silent auction will be followed by dinner and a program celebrating our commitment to be an innovative source of funding to supplement and enhance educational programming within Austin Public Schools. 

The fun on the course takes place on Monday, July 17, starting at 11:30 a.m. with lunch and a shotgun start to kick-off a fun afternoon of 18 holes at the Austin Country Club. 

Since its inception in 1990, the Austin Public Education Foundation has awarded over $750,000 in grant funding for requests ranging from Rubik’s Cubes and headphones to a podcast studio, a classroom set of snowshoes, and 3-D printers. Each year, teachers, coaches, and administrators submit applications for grant dollars to purchase a wide variety of tools, resources, and equipment that elevate the learning experience in our classrooms. 

We know many teachers supplement their classroom supplies out of their own pockets, and APEF grants help make sure our teachers can have resources that enhance educational opportunities for our students.  For the 2023-2024 school year, the foundation was able to approve grants totaling just over $96,000! 

The Packer Classic golf tournament serves as the primary annual fundraiser for the Austin Public Education Foundation. To call each year’s event a success, we rely on a few different revenue streams to be successful. The first is through generous sponsorships. With sponsorship packages ranging from $100 to $2000, we have several options — most of which include 2-4 player spots in the tournament and tickets to the gala. Our second source of funding is through tournament registrations. The single player entry fee of $150 includes a ticket to the gala, greens fees, cart, lunch, swag, and more! 

The third is through donations for our silent auction. Each year, we seek out silent auction items such as event tickets, gift cards, and other items that attendees can bid on during the gala. Putting it all together, we can see the positive impact our community can have on education in Austin. 

Our community has a long history of support for our schools, and more importantly, our kids. For that support, we thank you. 

We would love to see you at this year’s Packer Classic – Gala and Golf Event. Registration can be completed online at https://apefoundationahsalumni.wordpress.com/20-2/packerclassic/. Please reach out to the foundation’s Executive Director, Jen Boysen with questions or to get involved at APEF.Director@austin.k12.mn.us