A Taste of the Community Foundation

A Taste of the Community Foundation:

Charity Group Prepares for Taste of Ferndale Fundraiser

(Crystal A. Proxmire, 2/21/2011)

It all started back in 2003 when a resident donated a house to the City, with the proceeds to be used for local charities.  City leaders at the time hired longtime Ferndale resident and Real Estate broker Judy Palmer to assist them with the sale, while others formed The Ferndale Community Foundation to encourage more community giving.  “That was the “seed money” to help establish our endowment,” Palmer said. “From that, I was asked to join the board; I graciously accepted in 2004, I think.”

Palmer is one of a dozen citizens who serve on the Board of the Community Foundation as they prepare for their grand annual fundraising spectacular The Taste of Ferndale.  The taste-fest takes place on March 8, 2011 from 6-9pm at Via Nove Restaurant. Tickets are $30 and include samples from many local businesses, live music from The Metro Jazz Voices, and a large silent auction.  The event is presented this year by Garden Fresh Gourmet, whose generosity ensures that this year’s event will be even better than ever.

Some of the participating samplers include Anita’s Kitchen, B-Nektar, Christine’s Cuisine, Diablo’s, The Emory, WAB (Woodward Avenue Brewers), Hilton Road Café, Howe’s Bayou, Inyo, MiChigo, Pete’s Place, Rosie O’Grady’s, Treat Dreams, Via Nova, Western Market and more.

“Our endowment has allowed us to give back to the community over $35,000 in grant funds to many non-profit organizations in our area including: Ferndale Youth Assistance, FernCare, Michigan Fallen Heroes, Ferndale Historical Museum, Ferndale beautification Commission, The Arts Council for many art projects around the city including the city benches, Crows Nest, Murals, Seniors, OLSHA, a Bio Lab at Ferndale High School, the Boy Scouts & so much more,” Palmer said.  “I am honored & proud to give back to my community. Remember it’s not just Ferndale….its’ Fabulous Friendly Fashionable Ferndale the “Cool City!”

Community Foundation Board President Dan Martin said he is looking forward to this year’s fundraiser because of the way it brings people together.  “At least half of the people who come aren’t from Ferndale.  It’s such a great way to show the restaurants off, and what we do, to people outside of the city.  It gives such a broad view of the community.”

After the event, Board Members will be working on ways to support local nonprofits in other ways as well.  “There are over 120 nonprofits in Ferndale,” he said, noting that the number included churches as well as other groups.  “We need to really focus on the sustainability of nonprofits in Ferndale as the economy worsens.  Hopefully we can come up with projects that will help multiple nonprofits, and maybe find ways to share resources.”

Julia Music, who joined the Board last month, said she is excited to be part of the Community Foundation.  “I became involved because I feel that non-profit organizations enhance our community. FCF gives me the chance to help these organizations grow which will lead to Ferndale’s continued growth.  My family and I have chosen Ferndale as our home we want all who live here to feel that they have a chance to make a difference through working or volunteering for some of our outstanding nonprofits.”

Matt Nowaczok, a member for over a year, said “I got involved as this organization serves the broader good for Ferndale. It touches so many lives and provides a solid foundation for all start-up nonprofits in the community.”

For more information on The Ferndale Community Foundation, go to http://ferndalecommunityfoundation.org.  To see a list of charities that have benefitted from FCF grants, see http://ferndalecommunityfoundation.org/grants.

For other Ferndale Community Foundation news, check out the Ferndale 115 News Community Foundation Section at http://oaklandcounty115.com/category/community-foundation.

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