With victory in sight March 10 in Anhalt, event planners were moving steadily toward the goal of what promised to be the most successful All Sports Gala in Smithson Valley High School Athletic history. Suddenly, the Ranger gala planning team was hit with a sack that nearly shut them down.
But with the typical force of the unbeatable Ranger attitude that says, “Bring it on!” event planners put a halfback-styled juke and spin on the opposition and made the winning score with a last minute play to save the day. With fierceness of purpose, they stood unshaken against the sinister forces of event gremlins as the gala committee sprang into action.
It was in the last quarter of the planning phase that the fussy old water pump at Anhalt Dance Hall decided to call it quits. As the clock counted down to the Smithson Valley All Sports Gala, event planners were quick to bench the worn out player and call in a replacement.
As they hastened to find water in the final moments, victory was won as truck loads of the life-giving liquid roared onto the playing field to fill a cistern with enough water for a victory.
Then it was time to celebrate victory as approximately 450 sports fans flooded the Anhalt Dance Hall with blue and white in a moving display of Ranger pride. The old building, part of the 1859 Krause Settlement, was once again filled with music and laughter just as it has been for nearly 150 years of festivals and celebrations.
It is perhaps that winning attitude that did in fact result in the most successful gala in SVHS history. This year, the proceeds were approximately $68,000. That’s a $30,000 increase over what the gala raised last year. The funds will go to support athletic programs at SVHS as well as the two feeder schools. Chairpersons Kelly Daigle and Barby Gregory were thankful for the outcome. “It was amazing,” Daigle said. “I was blown away by the community support.”
When asked how she and Gregory chaired such a successful event, Daigle said, “It was definitely a team effort. We stood on the shoulders of so many people who came before us.” In spite of an overwhelming victory this year, Daigle and Gregory are ready to step down.
Currently, the Smithson Valley Athletic Booster Club is searching for someone to take the gala-planning baton and run for 2008. For more information about the club, see www.svabc.com. “Someone involved in athletics would be great," Daigle said.