Black-tie fundraiser to support unique charter schoolWritten by Dave Willinger | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Attendees at this year’s Admiral Ball benefiting The Maritime Academy of Toledo will dine, dance and get the chance to win a weeklong cruise of the Great Lakes in VIP style aboard a commercial freighter.
The annual black-tie event comes to the Fifth Third Center at One Seagate in Downtown Toledo 6:30-10:30 p.m. April 27.
While there will be many prizes auctioned off throughout the night, the seven-day cruise for two on an Interlake Steamship Great Lakes Freighter with luxury accommodations, as it is described in an academy press release, is “a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” according to academy founder and superintendent Renee Marazon.
“The cruise is to be used during the 2013 shipping season and includes a private stateroom and [access to] the guest lounge… Departure port and dates will be coordinated with the highest bidder,” Marazon stated in the release. Bids will also be accepted at email@example.com.
The academy, a public charter school founded in 2010 located near Downtown on the banks of the Maumee River, is a college-prep school for grades five through 12. The academy, chartered for a maximum of 480 students, has a current enrollment of 212 cadets, as the students are called.
The Maritime Academy adheres to the same criteria as a traditional public school while offering a curriculum that prepares graduates to enter the commercial maritime industry, said Marazon, who noted the school was rated “excellent” last year by the state Department of Education. State funding for charter schools equals about 60 percent of what public schools get, Marazon said, since charters receive no property tax dollars.
“Our school has had a year of incredible growth and accomplishments causing many people in our community to sit up and take notice,” Marazon said.
The school teaches the national core curriculum “through the development of nautical-maritime themed curriculum materials, teacher professional development and by providing tutoring to at-risk students,” according to an academy press release.
The academy’s education center also offers professional mariner courses, captain’s license courses and recreational boater safety courses.
The academy is seeking to raise $80,000 to support the school’s robotic program, transportation subsidies for low-income students, upgrades to equipment used by students as well as other expenses.
The theme for this year’s Admiral Ball is “Don’t Give Up the Ship,” this being the bicentennial of the Battle of Lake Erie, a key battle of the War of 1812. Nautical artifacts of the period fashioned by the cadets will adorn the Fifth Third Center during the festivities. Those pieces, described by Marazon as “quite spectacular,” will also be put up for auction. Cadets will also be on hand, decked out in their U.S. Coast Guard uniforms – the Maritime Academy is the only institution besides the actual Coast Guard Academy of New London, Conn., allowed to use those uniforms.
By the end of the evening everyone will be talking about that naval battle, Marazon predicted, calling it “a pivotal piece of our local history and one that was instrumental to the growth of the United States.”
In addition to the nautical-themed décor and auction and ballroom dancing to the sounds of local group Swingmania, Marazon said fine dining is guaranteed as the cuisine will be prepared by a locally renowned trio: chef Ed Gozdowski, formerly of Brandywine Country Club; Chef Marcel of Toledo’s Chef Marcel Fine Catering; and the academy’s chef, David Napierala.
Also up for auction is a tugboat cruise for six, donated by The Great Lakes Towing Group.
“The tug boat ride includes a box lunch and the winner has the option of cruising the Maumee River or the Cuyahoga River,” Marazon said in the release.
The tugboat ride will be scheduled directly with the Great Lakes Towing group for summer or fall 2013, Monday through Friday between 10 a.m. and noon, she said.
Other auction items include a family dinner package from Manos Greek Restaurant; overnight stay at Maumee Bay Resort with golf package; Notre Dame football tickets; swim party for 12; USS Toledo artifacts, executive chef dinner in your home; handcrafted 11-foot rowboat and other nautical items built by Maritime Academy cadets; basket of gourmet chocolates; Best of Toledo basket; Cleveland Browns autographed football; and a golf basket.
This year’s Admiral’s Ball is supported by an honorary committee chaired by Toledo Mayor Mike Bell. Other committee members include Jim Brennan Jr., president of Brennan Industrial Truck; Lawrence. J. Burns, vice president of external affairs at the University of Toledo; Paul LaMarre III, director of the Port of Monroe; Dr. Lance Talmage and Dee Talmage; Paul Toth Jr., president and CEO of Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority; Dock D. Treece, president of Treece Investment Advisory Corp.; Dock David Treece, partner of Treece Investment Advisory Corp.; and Toledo City Councilman George Sarantou.
Tickets for the Admiral’s Ball are $150 per person or $200 a couple. For information or tickets, or to donate items for the Admiral’s Ball auction, call (419) 244-9999. Those with questions can email firstname.lastname@example.org. Information is also available at www.themaritimefoundation.us.