Sumter Academy held their annual fall festival on October 25 from 5:30 to 8:00 p.m.
Margo Bryan, a member of the PTA, said they raised around 3,500 to 4,000 dollars. This is how much they usually make each year. She said was pleased with the turn out.
“I think we have a good turn out every year,” said Bryan. “It’s always better when the weather is nice like this.”
Bryan said the money raised from the booths and food goes straight into the PTA account. They help with projects that the school cannot afford to pay for, such as math curriculum and the accelerated reading program.
She said she and two women who helped her arrived at the school at eight in the morning to set up the tables and booths, make signs and decorate. They also had to make sure the parents were lined up to work their shifts.
Volunteers included sororities, fraternities, and the softball team from the University of West Alabama, as well as parents, teachers and PTA members.
“If we didn’t have those groups coming out to help, we would not be able to do this,” said Bryan. “It would be really hard because we are from a small school and it takes everybody to make it work.”
One volunteer was Lauren Dunkin, an Alpha Sigma Alpha sorority member, who worked the goldfish toss. She said she enjoyed working with the kids and seeing them dressed up in their costumes.
“We’ve been doing the fall festival since my freshman year,” said Dunkin. “I think it’s just a good way for us to give back to the community and show that we are more than just Greek organizations. I think it gives Greeks a better name.”
The festival had its annual Brunswick stew, as well as hotdogs. The Grandparents club set up a booth where they sold popcorn, caramel apples and nachos.
Bryan said the Brunswick stew is a big hit. The church group who cooked it has been making the stew since the school opened in the early ‘70s.
There were many games set up to play. A few of them were a ring toss, duck pond, hole in one golf, go fish and pie throw. Children had the chance to win prizes such as candy, goldfish and toys which were ordered from Oriental Trading. There was also a haunted house and train ride.
Emma Edmonds, one of the participants who is six years old, said she enjoyed the musical chairs. She won and got to choose a baby doll for her prize.
Four tickets, which cost $1, were required to play each game. There was also an option to receive an armband for $20 which allowed the child to play any booth as many times as they wanted.
Parents were also able to play a game of bingo while their children played.
“We do it because it’s fun and the kids love it,” said Bryan. “It’s a lot of work, but hearing how good of a time everyone had makes it worth it.”