The idea came in the beginning of spring term of 2015. After a lot of brainstorming among the sisters of Gamma Phi Beta’s Epsilon Epsilon chapter, Mary Kate Pope ’16 came up with the concept of doing a dinner and basket raffle, and in that moment, the Crescent Classic was born.
All the sisters were excited about the idea and during the spring term of 2015 there was a test run of the first Crescent Cassic, but on Saturday, Oct. 10, the first, official Crescent Classic took place.
Maeve Williams ’16, the senior philanthropy chair, felt a lot of pressure to have a successful event, since it had never been done before. With this in mind, she spent the whole term preparing for the event.
“A lot of work went into soliciting donations for our baskets for the basket raffles. We had a lot of variety in our baskets because we asked a lot of local businesses if they were willing to donate.
I think after explaining what our philanthropy was the idea really resonated with them, which encouraged them to donate even more. We relied heavily on endorsements from local businesses,” explained Williams. Some of the baskets consisted of having soap from Green Market booths and restaurant gift certificates with filler.
None of the sisters made baskets; however some of the parents who owned businesses nearby donated a basket. Gamma Phi Beta’s National Representative, Crystal, also donated a basket to the Crescent Classic.
“Setting up two hours before the event, I was trying to make sure everything was running smoothly. I had always had this picture in my mind of how the event was going to be and this was the first time I was seeing this picture of the event become a reality.
But when the event did finally become a reality, it was so much better than I could have pictured. There was so much support from our sisterhood who brought friends and family,” elaborated Williams.
The event consisted of having a dinner catered by Augie’s Restaurant and Catering, who also donated a basket for the raffle.
All the seats for the Crescent Classic dinner were sold out, as were raffle tickets. The event overall was a big success, with over $2,000 raised.
Williams stated, “I am really proud of our sisters. It is really hard to start something out of nothing. It really came down to everyone pitching in to make this event be a success. There was so much help from everyone, even people who were planning on just attending the event, instead of selling raffle tickets or serving dinner.
It was really nice to show families what girls do for our philanthropy and it will only be more successful in the future.”
Girls on the Run is the national philanthropy for Gamma Phi Beta, where all the proceeds of the Crescent Classic were given to. “As part of our philanthropy program, we have sisters who are coaches for about five different schools. They will teach the girls at the school how to run a 5k, nutrition and healthy eating habits.
They may not be getting these healthy life style tips from anywhere else, so it’s a great opportunity that sisters get to work directly with the girls.
We have really made a push over the past couple years to be more physically involved in volunteering with the girls,” said Williams.
“Overall, local businesses are what really made this basket raffle possible. Everyone was so much more generous than we could have expected and it was great seeing the sisters step up to make it happen. You can see how we really care about our philanthropy and that it is something that we don’t view as a distant thought. I am proud to be senior philanthropy chair of Gamma Phi Beta,” explained Williams.