Main dishes were supplied by Scott and Lisa Dover (Table of Five pizza), attorney Scott Gardner (BBQ chicken) and Assistant Fire Chief Greg Harrell (represented by firefighter Greg Smith serving Pulled Pork Sliders).
Pettis County Sheriff Kevin Bond brought pasta salad, while Bob Satnan created his carrot apple salad. Septagon stirred up some amazing Settler’s Beans. SFCC President Joanna Anderson baked sugar cookies decorated with the United Way’s colorful logo, while Sara Hampton of County Distributing offered Oreo brownies to those attending.
The top three vote getters in each category were Bond, Harrell and Hampton. After the audience made noise for their top pick via an app on Matt LaCasse’s phone, it was determined that Hampton would win the bronze-colored traveling celebrity chef trophy for her Oreo brownies.
A total of 22 area agencies were represented at the luncheon, which kicked off a campign to raise $500,000 for the Sedalia-Pettis County United Way.
According to Campaign Chairman Bob Satnan, the theme for this year is “A Half to Make Us Whole,” referring to the half million dollars the organization hopes to raise for those 22 agencies to share. “A half million dollars to make us a whole community,” Satnan explained.
“Last year, our goal was $540,000, and we brought in a little over $480,000. So it’s a stretch from what we brought in last year, but we think it’s a reasonable goal; it’s something our community we think will rally around and we’ll be able to be successful this year and help out our agencies,” he stated.
Each one of the 22 United Way Agencies helps people in Sedalia and Pettis County every day to live a better life, he stressed, adding that the campaign is going to focus on telling the personal stories of how people in our community have been affected by United Way dollars.
“When you give a dollar to a United Way agency, they can compound that money, and have such an incredible impact all across our community. We just want people to know how great our agencies are at using those dollars to the greatest benefit,” Satnan said.
Sedalia Mayor Stephen J. Galliher delivered a proclamation during the event, proclaiming “Sedalia-Pettis County United Way Kick-Off Day” and recognizing the efforts of the United Way and its volunteers to make Sedalia a better place to live and work. “Thanks to all of them, it works for all of us in Sedalia,” Mayor Galliher said.
The next step involves contact with local employers to try and persuade workers to become donors for United Way. And this year, one of the things the campaign will do is to try to do is explain the mission of United Way better to those who know of UW, but don’t give to the program.
“If you’re willing to give up one coffee or one soda a week, that’s a dollar a week, that’s $50 a year, if we give that money to CACTUS (for instance), they can buy four backpacks filled with supplies for students in need,” Satnan said of just one example. “That’s an incredible impact that you can have (on your community).”
United Way will also rely on guest speakers such a Lori Haney from CASA and Jack Menges from Open Door to deliver UW’s message for this year’s campaign. “They can talk specifically on how United Way has helped them be successful in helping people in our community,” Satnan concluded. For more information about United Way, visit www.spcuw.org. Photos by Randy Kirby, Sedalia Weekly Observer.