James HowellStaff Writerjhowell@heartlandpublications.com
October 18, 2012
The Carolina Panther’s cheerleaders excited the community with their visit to West Jefferson Chevrolet Tuesday, Oct. 16, and the Ashe County High School’s marching band benefited from a fundraiser held in their honor.
“This was a good opportunity for the cheerleaders to interact with the fans,” said Scott Auker, from the Panther’s corporate sponsorship marketing department.
Auker also said “the Panther’s organization wants to have the support of the entire state of North Carolina, so we like to visit areas, even if they are a few hours away from the stadium.”
Not only was the event enjoyable, Panther Day was also a venue to raise money for the Ashe County High School’s Marching Band.
“This event was really successful. It was a good tie-in to our community and I’m proud to say it really helped the band,” said Brian Minton, the general manager of West Jefferson Chevrolet.
Due to Panther Day, the band raised $756, according to Mason Harris, the president of the band booster club.
This money was raised in a variety of ways. For instance, West Jefferson Chevrolet gave the band several pieces of Panther paraphernalia to auction off, which turned into profit for the band.
Also, the band attended Panther Day, selling food to visitors and playing a few “pep tunes,” said Carrie Mitchell, the director for the Ashe County High School Marching Band.
Harris said there are more fundraising opportunities for the band in the future. According to Harris, the band booster club will hold a silent auction for a 2013 Chevrolet Spark on March 23, 2013, at Family Central.
The band booster club pans on selling 300 raffle tickets at $100 per ticket. If every ticket is sold, the raffle will raise $30,000, minus the approximate $20,000 for the 2013 Spark, leaving the band with approximately $10,000.
According to Harris, the high school’s marching band needs new uniforms, which are now 13 years old, and in some cases, literally falling apart. Harris said this is the reason for the band’s recent fundraising efforts.
Auker said he was happy the band benefited from the event, calling Panther Day “a success” for the community and the events sponsors, GMC and Buick, who are also sponsors of the Carolina Panthers.