Tacoma Narrows Rotary will be celebrating their fourth annual Celebrate Community Event at Curtis Junior High School on April 29. Supported by Tacoma Narrows Rotary, University Place School District, City of University Place, Peace Out, and the UP-Parent Teacher Student Association, the Celebrate Community event will recognize volunteers in the community, hand out awards, hear from some well-known Curtis High School alumni, and help raise funds for future scholarships.
The Celebrate Community Event was developed four years ago by Dr. Jay Mosser, pastor of Sunset Bible Church and president of the Tacoma Narrows Rotary at that time. “[Dr. Mosser] wanted to celebrate and build community here in University Place,” said Chris Saunders of Sunset Bible Church. “Years before when he had graduated from high school, a scholarship was made available to him for his first year to get going in college. He thought he could do college, but being the youngest of six children there was little money available from the family for him to go. The scholarship to start made a big difference.” Since then, Tacoma Narrows Rotary has given more than $100,000 to local students in scholarships for college.
University Place Mayor Javier Figueroa will be presenting the awards on behalf of the city. The awards include Rotary Scholarships, PTSA Golden Acorn winners, and many others.
This year’s Celebrate Community Event will be highlighted by special keynote speaker Chris Daniels, reporter for KING 5 News. Daniels graduated from Curtis High School and went on to Washington State University. Since then, Daniels has covered stories that range from the Oso landslide to the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. Daniels was named top reporter in the Western United States by the Associated Press Television and Radio Association in 2015.
The event will also hold an interview with Curtis High alum Andrea Geubelle, award winning track and field athlete. Geubelle made a name for herself at Curtis as well as the University of Kansas in the triple jump, the long jump, and the 100-meter dash. After finishing third at the United States Olympic trials in the Triple Jump event, Geubelle was invited to become a member of the United States team at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
“This is an opportunity to enjoy community together,” said Saunders, “to give a shout out to those who faithfully serve, to see old friends and make new ones, while encouraging our graduating seniors for their hard work.”
Last year, this event raised more than $11,000 to help fund student scholarships.