Black Friday Roller Skating at Oaks Park 11 am – 1 pm


Image | Posted on by | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Auction Sponsorship Opportunities Abound!


As we prepare for the “Go Green Gala” Dinner & Auction on Saturday, February 28, 2015, we are working hard to sign up event sponsors. These are local businesses who support our very own students by making a financial donation to help us minimize our event expenses.

Sponsors are the sole reason we keep our ticket prices so low ($45 in 2014— literally the cost of the exquisite dinner) and fundraising levels high.  Sponsors enable us to offer SWCS staff and their guests complimentary tickets.  They cover the cost of printing, the live auctioneer, A/V and even our event website and software.

Sponsorship levels range from $500 to $5,000 and we recognize these partners in every auction-related e-blast to the community, on our event website and throughout the year on the main SWCS website, which has thousands of viewers each year. Sponsors at each level receive an ad in our gorgeous live auction catalog, logo placement on event posters and VIP event tickets.

By all standards, our sponsorship program offers a wonderful avenue to support community and a bargain in the advertising world.

To learn more, see the list of Event Sponsorship Recognition and Opportunities

To view last year’s auction sponsors on the 2014 “Rockin’ Riverboat Auction” website, go to:

To view last year’s gorgeous live auction catalog click on:

If you know of a business that might be interested in our sponsorship program, please contact Sarah Mutal at   If a sponsorship is not possible at this time, then the business might be interested in donating an auction item or advertising in our live auction catalog.   There are all kinds of ways to participate in our community supported event!

Thank you for taking the time to think of potential event sponsors,
Sarah Mutal

Posted in Auction | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Opportunity for Parent & Student Artists/Crafters

ncnmfairWe will be hosting a table at the National College of Natural Medicine Arts & Craft Fair, which is part of their Wintergreen Homecoming on Saturday, December 13th!

NCNM has offered us a vendors’ table free of charge to sell arts and crafts made by our kids or adults — and we can keep all of the profits. This is a wonderful way for us to build a partnership with NCNM and get the word out about our school and our wonderfully creative teachers and students. If you would like to help teachers and students with an art or craft project for this community event please let us know.

Please spread to word to friends and family to come and shop local artisan crafts, jewelry, gifts. There will be over 50 local vendors bringing their wares for you. Children’s attractions include face painting, crafts and a drumming class!

Click here to download a copy of the flyer.

Posted in Community Building | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Pizzicato “Dough for Dollars” November 18th ~ Includes Pre-Ordering Information

pizzicato2014Take the night off from cooking!

Last year, our Pizzicato “Dough for Dollars” fundraisers were a huge success! So, we’ve scheduled another one for Tuesday, November 18th!

Order forms, with payment, are due this Friday, 11/14 by 9am!

You can pre-order par-baked pizzas and pick them up at school at the end of the day on 11/18, dine-in, or do take out that same day at the Hillsdale Pizzicato location. This fundraiser also counts towards the purchase of gift cards, so grab some early holiday gifts, or save one for dining another day!

20% of the store’s total sales for the day will go to Southwest Charter School! Tell your friends and family!

Order forms with menus are going home today. Order forms can also be found here. Orders are due Friday, November 18th, with payment. Checks can be made out to SWCS.

You can also email your order directly to Harmony at Please note: If you email in your order, payment must be made by calling in payment to Karen to have your order finalized.


Posted in Fundraising | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Friends Meeting Minutes ~ November 2014

Friends of SW Charter School (FOSWCS)
Monthly Meeting Minutes
Elephant’s on Corbett
November 4, 2014

Open Forum Community Comments

Lisa’s 5/6 class is conducting a food drive to benefit the Oregon Food Bank. The class that collects the most items will win a party hosted by Lisa’s class. So far Susan’s ¾ class is leading. There is a collection box outside each classroom.

Kathy told us about two upcoming craft fairs in the S. Waterfront that Sarah Anderson has secured booths at for anyone (students and parents) who would like to participate. One fair is at the National College of Natural Medicine (NCNM) on Saturday, December 13th from 10 am – 6pm. The other is the South Waterfront Craft Faire on December 5 & 6 in the Mirabella’s Willamette Hall. Kathy is thinking of doing an afterschool craft day so that kids can make things. Parents are welcome to help out and use a classroom to teach a craft. Nessa, Kathy and Jonathan have committed to participating.

Kathy thanked Friends for her birthday gift.

Open Positions

We have open several positions on the Friends Board and the Auction Team

  • Secretary – Responsible for taking meeting minutes, maintaining the Friends blog, Google calendar, and lobby bulletin board.
  • Vice President – Especially looking for someone who might want to step up to President next year.
  • Treasurer
  • Auction Sponsorship Shadow
  • Auction Procurement Chair for 2015-2016

If you or anyone you know might be interested, get in touch with Christina.

Run for the Arts Update

Adrienne has finished the deposit with Young Audiences. All totals will be announced at the Run for the Arts Awards Ceremony on November 21st at 8:30 am.

Marlene and Anne are working on the awards ceremony logistics, Power Point presentation, etc. T-shirts and pencils will be distributed to teachers. In addition to the usual prizes for top earners, there will also be some additional prizes for things like most laps run, etc.

We would like some photographers for the awards ceremony, even if it’s just pictures from your phone. Jen Downer was suggested. She is a professional portrait photographer.

We will start planning for R4TA 2015 in the spring. All agreed it worked well dividing the work among three people. We’d like to continue this model next year.

Staff Appreciation Committee Update

Students donated 200 lbs. of Halloween candy for Operation Gratitude!

Melissa is planning the annual staff holiday party. A Sign Up Genius request will come out in the next few weeks.

Melissa is organizing another work party. Amanda is talking to the staff to see what they need done.

Community Life

Morning Coffee is this Thursday, November 6th after drop-off.

November 18th – We will have a “Dough for Dollars” Pizzicato fundraiser. Gift cards also count toward the fundraiser.

November 28th — Black Friday Roller Skating at Oaks Park. Need a minimum of 25 people. The rink will open just for our school. Kathy suggests that everyone come dressed in Star Wars attire!

February 9th – Restaurant night at Hopworks Urban Brewery (29th & SE Powell). To get donation to school, you must mention to your server that you are from SWCS.


Carrie reported that we need about 10 more people to do procurement work. There’s a lot to do, but it’s easy work. Sarah, Jessica, Heather, Naomi, and Christina volunteered to help. You’ll get access to the Google doc and you can contact whoever you want. Carrie will email everyone with the forms you’ll need. She will also post them on the Auction Facebook page.

Sarah has contacted last year’s sponsors and has already gotten four yeses including Hillside Imports and Mr. Greenbeans. We need to get the word out about sponsorship levels and what benefits sponsors receive.

Even for a low-level sponsorship, sponsors receive their logo and link to their website on our auction website and the school’s newly renovated website. Also, their logo goes on flyers, email blasts, and the printed auction catalog. They are included on press releases to the community at large, receive tickets to the auction and swag the night of. Pretty good deal!

Friday Lunches

Teacher Amanda has asked whether we would consider providing lunch 1x per week. We might ask Rovente Pizza. They are providing the pizza for the Run for the Arts party. We might start with once a month and see how it goes.

Jessica is interested in making this happen. Sarah M., Sarah G, and Naomi are willing to help.

Emerson does something like this. We might want to check to see how they run their lunch program.

Another restaurant to try to work with is Jola Café on SW Corbett. They offer a school lunch menu.

Buddy Bench

We’d like to include a buddy bench in the school playground.

A buddy bench is a special bench where students can sit if they are feeling bored or lonely. It’s usually brightly colored and labeled “BUDDY BENCH” in big letters. Other students can then go to the bench and ask them if they would like to play or talk.

It is a simple idea to eliminate loneliness and foster friendship on the playground. A buddy bench is more than just a playground decoration. Designating such a bench is a helpful way for schools to facilitate “peer support” among students. Peer support as a critical factor in combating school bullying.

Maybe we could have the kids come up with a name for the buddy bench.

We need to paint the bench and perhaps place it by the clock in the play area.


Elise has volunteered to work on a school. Anna’s daughter Stephanie works on Wilson’s HS yearbook would be will to help us compile one.

Elise also mentioned having Jen Downer take over for Tryon Creek to take student photos. Jessica mentioned that it would be nice to have a photographer do holiday family portraits as a fundraiser.

Financial Update

We’re doing great.

Last quarter, we received $410 from Fred Meyer Community Rewards. About 50 families are enrolled. Liz will do a blog post and make a flyer about this and Amazon Smile that we can laminate and put on the fence outside school.

We raised over $1200 in Chinook Books.

We raised $200 in T-Shirt sales. Sarah can do another order if we get 36 orders.

So far this year, we have spent $715 of our $5000 budget.

Final Community Comments

Jessica from the Board will try to attend to our monthly meetings.

Board is also looking for new members too. Next Board Meeting is November 20th at 7:30 pm.

Dates to Remember

  • November 6 ~ Community Coffee in the Great Room
  • November 10-11 ~ No School
  • November 18 ~ Pizzicato Restaurant Night
  • November 21 ~ Run for the Arts Awards Ceremony 8:30 am
  • November 24-28 ~ No School, Thanksgiving Break
  • November 28 ~ Black Friday Roller Skating at Oaks Park
  • December 2 ~ FOSWCS Meeting, Elephants Deli 6:30 pm

Google Docs version of minutes

Posted in Minutes | Tagged , | Leave a comment

SWCS Auction ~ One Item, One Bottle of Wine

gogreengalaDear SWCS Families:

The Auction Team is working hard every day to bring in quirky, fabulous items for bidding at the Go Green Gala on February 28, 2015. All that is asked of each SW Charter family is for ‘one item and one bottle of wine’.

One Donated Auction Item per family —  Here are 3 ways to go about it:

    • Email the .pdfs of the New Donor Letter to your favorite restaurant/neighborhood business with a personalized note such as:  “I am a regular customer and a big fan of your business.  I hope you will consider donating a gift certificate to our kids’ public school auction on February 28 the GO GREEN GALA.  I’d be happy to pick up any donation.   Thank you for your consideration.”  Super Easy! No cold calling!
    • Drop off a request letter and donation form the next time you’re in.  Letters and forms are in envelopes throughout the SWCS hallways or you can print off the attached .pdfs.  Be sure to write a personal note (see above) and leave your contact info in the corner.
    • Request donations on your Facebook page and attach the documents.   You will get responses!


More details:

  • Don’t delay.  Before Thanksgiving is the slow season for donation requests.  Businesses are flooded come January.
  • Follow up.  Once you’ve made contact once, sometimes they just need one more reminder.
  • Restaurant certificates are hot in Portland.  Therefore, even a $10 gift certificate will sell right off.
  • If you know someone who has a second home, please ask them for donation of a stay.  Donors can ask the top bidders for a cleaning fee in the item description and they are not beholden to donate year after year if they don’t want to.
  • We can make a gift certificate for your donation.  Just turn in the donation form.  Easy.
  • Your item can be placed in the Donation Box by Kathy’s desk.  Be sure to turn it in with a completed Donation Form.

The Bottle of Wine (collections begin in January):
Each year, we sell off a WALL of WINE.  We try to collect a bottle of wine (worth $15 and up) from each family, and sell them as Mystery Bottles on auction night.  It’s a blast! Starting in mid-January, we will be collecting bottles on each Thursday of the week.  Easy!

The GO GREEN GALA promises to be a great fundraising success and community event for our school if we all take part.  Thank you for your participation!
The Auction Team

Posted in Auction | Tagged , , | Leave a comment