On Monday, Oct. 19, about 150 community members and restaurateurs filled the Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School's cafeteria for their annual Taste of Ballston event, which is a fundraising event for the Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Education Foundation.
Ten years ago I was retiring from the BH-BL school board, and when you sit on the school board you watch interesting things fall off the bottom of the budget, said BH-BL Education Foundation president Dorie McArthur, an organizer of the event. "First you have to fix the roof and pay the staff, who are the heart and soul of the district."
McArthur said meeting the budget essentials meant there were some projects the school was unable to fund.
When McArthur retired, she and several other community members developed a not-for-profit organization to "fund some of those things that will make education exciting for students and also teachers."
Projects don't have to be big or elaborate to get funded. They typically range from a few hundred dollars to $1,000.
Nine years ago, the BH-BL Education Foundation started the Tast of Ballston event to be a major fundraiser for the foundation.
"It funds thousands of dollars [of grants]," said McArthur. "Last night I went to the Burnt Hills post office to pick up the last of the ticket orders, and in one of the mailboxes was the first grant request."
Ten area restaurants participated in the event, including the Woodlin Club of Glenville; The Factory, which is in the village of Ballston Spa; the Millstone Lodge of Glenville; Sam's Chinese Restaurant of Burnt Hills; Peking Wok of Burnt Hills; Marcella's of Glenville; Good Times Lakeview Restaurant of Ballston Lake; Carney's of Ballston Lake; BH-BL Food Service, which serves thousands of meals every day to the BH-BL school community, and Augie's on Route 50 between Burnt Hills and Ballston Spa. Restaurant owners not only donated the food for the event, but also their time, serving up samples of their food to attendees.