Variety show marks 20 years

FAIRMONT – Partners in Education will host its 20th annual variety show Tuesday, a celebration of all the years of assistance rendered to local teachers and a look to the future.

Performing will be a range of talents, from the tickling of ivories, to ventriloquism, to baton twirlers and drum solos.

Partners board member Helen Gould is particularly looking forward to seeing a group of elementary teachers perform Michael Jackson’s “ABC.”

“They wanted to show everyone they do know their ABCs and 123s,” Gould said with a laugh.

Admission to the show is by a suggested donation of $10 for a family, $5 for adults and $3 for students.

The variety show fundraiser helps provide teachers with grants. Gould said this year’s gifts have already been awarded, with about $16,000 worth of requests granted.

In the past, grants have paid for items such as buses for a field trip to Mankato to learn about meteorology, an electric violin for the orchestra, and classroom novel sets.

“We do spread [the grants] over the grades, so K-12 get the benefits,” Gould said.

Over the years, not many requests have surprised Gould, although she admitted some departments do have more unexpected requests than others.

“The science department has interesting things to ask for,” she noted.

Gould said the organization gets more applications than it has funding for, and it typically puts emphasis on items to assist with reading or computer literacy.

Most grants are in the range of $1,500.

Prior to the show, the junior high jazz band will perform. Caitlin Parsley and Taylor Schultz will sing the national anthem.

The show begins at 7 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center at Fairmont High School.