Annual Breakfast raises $36,000 for programs at Third Place Commons

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

280 community members gather to honor the Commons
Photo by Thomas Ager

By Constance Perenyi

It is a late winter, early morning tradition. On the second Thursday of February, almost always close to Valentine’s Day, folks rise early, arrive in Lake Forest Park at dawn’s early light, and join hundreds of their friends and colleagues to celebrate and raise money for Third Place Commons, the heart of the north end of King County. This year, the festivities on February 13 drew more than 280 supporters. By the time all the checks roll in, the Commons will have raised more than $36,000 to support over 900 free, public programs in the coming year.

This marks the ninth, and most successful Breakfast in the Commons. Lake Forest Park resident Allen Schauffler returned as Master of Ceremonies, and remarked, “You know I have done this for 8 years. I have seen the Commons go from a good idea to something that is now woven into the fabric of our community. The Commons is about collaboration, teamwork and partnerships.”

The breakfast began with a celebration of musical partnerships in the Commons. Glen Milner, Alisa Milner, and Ian McFerron welcomed guests with their signature fiddles and guitar. David Shere of the Music Center of the Northwest played and sang while everyone enjoyed Honey Bear bacon and Great Harvest treats. And then Madison Marquette, owner and manager of the Town Center, was recognized for teaming with Third Place Commons to bring back music on Friday and Saturday nights.

Every year, Third Place Commons honors one community partner for service above and beyond ordinary support. The Lake Forest Park Rotary Club was the first recipient nine years ago at the first Breakfast. In 2014, the Commons again honored Rotary, this time for unwavering support of Commons programming and of the Lake Forest Park Farmers Market. Rotarians collect food for local food banks at the end of every market, and for the last two years, Rotary has helped fund the Market Bucks food assistance program.

Current president Sally Renn accepted on behalf of the club, and in the true spirit of partnership, reciprocated by announcing the winners of the first Jeff Award. Named after Jeff Weissman, beloved Rotarian and retired owner of Great Harvest Bread Company, this new award recognizes a Lake Forest Park Business with an exemplary commitment to high ethical standards and public values. Nominations this first year lead to the choice of two local businesses, and three people were called to the stage: Douglas Carl and Janiece Hoggatt from A Better Day Salon, and Robert Sindelar, Managing Partner of Third Place Books.

Following the awards, King County Councilmember Rod Dembowski took the stage to share his impressions of the role Third Place Commons plays as a vital community space in his district. He talked about the challenges King County faces, and returned again to the importance of people talking to each other and working together, something he sees every time he visits the Commons.

The event ended with a heartfelt request from Third Place Commons board members Tanya Laskelle and Leslie Brooks, both new mothers who want the Commons to be part of their children’s lives. Tanya grew up in Lake Forest Park, and she shared memories of an empty mall that had little to offer the community. By contrast, both she and Leslie can now bring their babies to the Commons for Play and Learn activities, meet friends for coffee, listen to music, and shop for fresh food at the Lake Forest Park Farmers Market. With a photograph in the background of them with their children and their mothers, Tanya and Leslie demonstrated that the Commons is a unique space with intergenerational value. They encouraged everyone to reach deep and support the Commons on behalf of everyone in their families.

As promised, the Breakfast ended before 8:30am so people could start the work day on time, with renewed energy and the great feeling of having supported Third Place Commons. This event, just like the Commons, is for everyone, and it is a lot of fun. If you missed it this year, be sure to mark your 2015 calendar for Thursday, February 12, 7am. Tickets will be available online starting in December of this year. To stay posted on this and all Commons events, visit the Commons website and be sure to like the Friends of Third Place Commons Facebook page. Donations are gratefully received throughout the year. For more information about how you can support your Commons with tax-deductible contributions, email the Commons.


Post a Comment

We encourage the thoughtful sharing of information and ideas. We expect comments to be civil and respectful, with no personal attacks or offensive language. We reserve the right to delete any comment.
Facebook: Shoreline Area News
Twitter: @ShorelineArea
Daily Email edition (don't forget to respond to the email)

  © Blogger template The Professional Template II by 2009

Back to TOP