by Terry Rogers
The Greater Milford Boys and Girls Club will hold their Annual Bowl-A-Thon on Friday, March 9 from 6 to 9 PM at the Milford Bowling Lanes. The event, which is always well attended, is a fundraiser for the Club.
“Participants not only get a t-shirt, they get a fun night out with friends,” Tod Van Eyken, Senior Executive Director of the Club, said. “They also get the good feeling that they are supporting a worthy cause – our children.”
Mr. Van Eyken said that they are still accepting applications for teams for the Bowl-A-Thon. Individuals may sign up or businesses may choose to register teams to compete in the event. This is the 15th year for the Bowl-A-Thon and the event raises approximately $10,000 for the Club each year.
In addition to providing daily guidance and mentoring, the Club offers structured programming throughout the year which has supported improved academic performance and attendance of Milford Club kids in local elementary, middle and high schools. According to Director Tod Van Eyken, the Greater Milford Boys & Girls Club provides over $75,000 per year in financial scholarships, which is 5% of their annual budget. Van Eyken stated that the Annual Fund Campaign assists local families by creating some form of financial assistance for more than seventy percent of the children currently enrolled in the Greater Milford Boys & Girls Club.
“We decided to do this because a lot of other clubs in Delaware and around the country were doing Bowl-A-Thons,” Mr. Van Eyken said. “Their events were very successful and the Board at the time decided that the Milford Club should join in the fun. Even if you don’t want to bowl, you can come out and cheer on your family and friends as they bowl.”
In addition to bowling, those who attend the event can purchase raffle tickets for prizes donated by area businesses. There are also ‘Red Pin” prizes available. When a competitor bowls a strike when a red pin is in the first pin position, they win a prize.
“When we started this event, we only filled about half the lanes,” Mr. Van Eyken said. “Now, the bowling alley is closed to the public because we have every lane filled. The funds raised are used to support our local scholarship fund. This allows us to help families afford the programs we offer. This event can make the difference between a child attending and a child not attending. It is sometimes difficult for families with multiple children to afford the club and the scholarship need has grown steadily over the years.”
Each year, flyers and registration forms are sent to those who participated in the event the previous year. In addition, the forms are sent to board members and club staff. Sponsorships are accepted and many sponsors also provide teams for the event. It is also promoted on social media. Anyone who is interested in participating can contact the event organizer, Zaida Guarjardo by calling 302-422-4453 or via email at ZGuajardo@bgclubs.org.
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