First ever Harvest Dance to benefit food bank

November 10, 2008

By David Hayes

At the end of the summer Concerts on the Green, Bill Werner and David Harris were reminiscing over a couple brews at a local watering hole. The two, who have organized a few community events over the years, were thinking the good times generated by the concerts shouldn’t end with summer.

“We wanted a fun evening for the community and thought a great way is to have more live music or a dance,” Werner said.

Thinking they’d especially like to recreate the success of the Mardi Gras dance/fundraiser in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, the duo decided to combine the evening of fun with a good cause. Only this time, they’d keep it local.

Thus, the Harvest Dance Nov. 21; the beneficiary is the Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank.

The shelves of the bank have become sparse, as fewer and fewer donations of usual items come in. Werner said the ultimate goal is to raise $400,000, which would come from three main sources — ticket sales, an auction and a live ask.

“That’s essentially just like an auction,” Werner explained, “Only the auctioneer’s calls are for donations, not for bids on an item.”

Werner and Harris worked their resources and contacts and threw together an impressive evening. The city donated the use of Pickering Barn. And Harris got the services of the Astro Cats and Magnolia Road to provide entertainment. The Kiwanis chipped in to host the auction in between performances.

The Issaquah High School Key Club even got involved, offering to provide manpower for setup and cleanup, and selling water bottles and soda.

Food and Clothing Bank Director Cherie Meier said there are many shortages throughout the depleted shelves. She complied a top 10 list of the most urgent needs:

  • Holiday food (especially fresh ham and turkey, or a gift card to purchase them)
  • Fresh produce
  • Protein items, like peanut butter
  • Chili and stew
  • Baking supplies
  • Drinks, like tea, hot chocolate and juices
  • Snack items, like raisins and nuts
  • Jelly
  • Dairy products, like milk, cheese and eggs
  • Coffee, a real rarity at the food bank.

Werner said 500 tickets have been printed; organizers hope at least 300 people attend.

“We also have a couple of vendors, are trying to get a couple more and we’re working on getting a celebrity host,” he said.

If you go

Harvest Dance

A benefit for the Issaquah Food Bank

6:30-11 p.m. Nov. 21

Pickering Barn, 1730 10th Ave. N.W.

$10 in advance (at The Issaquah Press); $15 at the door

894-4410 or

Reach Reporter David Hayes at 392-6434, ext. 237, or

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