The Brownsville School Foundation received their second largest civic organization donation of $6,000 to help build a new playground at Brownsville School.

Jerry Pollard and Ron Harrington, of the Grayville Masonic Lodge, presented two checks to Pam Deig, the President of the Brownsville School Foundation, at their September 25 meeting at the Elks in Carmi. The two checks gave a total of $6,000 and Pollard stated, “It’s the most money we have raised and got for a good cause.” Board members and individuals in attendance were very grateful for the generous donation.

The Brownsville School Foundation is a non-profit organization created to help fund the educational resources for Brownsville School. The board came together in June of last year to figure out how to help the school and realized that the need for better equipment was a lot greater than they had anticipated. Lacey Harms, a member of the board, gave some background about what the board has accomplished, “the architect and Elastec are helping to repair the existing playground so that they can still use it. On the new side of the school, where the new playground will be, we were able to purchase two wheel chair swings and eight regular ones. We are working on trying to get sidewalks poured and we will be reviewing the plans to make sure it’s up to code before we start getting sponsorships.”

Mallory Stendeback, Secretary of the board, went over the Treasurer’s report. With the help of the Masonic Lodge donation, Stendeback informed the board that the new total amount in the boards funds is $42,561.64. Stendeback also updated the board on the new basketball goals, which were installed with the help of board member, Jeremy Pretzsch, and his father. Brent Edwards and Kenny Hargrave have volunteered to help fix the sidewalks and provide landscaping, and Rich Kingston has donated edging for the underlay for the swings at the playground. Kathy Price, Brownsville Principal, and T.J. Ackerman were able to take a copy of the playground design to all the teachers and get their approval, now the school board will need to look it over and give it the “okay.” Pretzsch had developed a playground handout with the design and prices so the board can start getting donations and fundraising to help raise the money to cover the costs of the playground. 

Lacey Harms let the board know that it was getting hard to find accessible wood chips to put underneath the swings. “Nobody has it. Custom Recreation in Evansville has rubber mulch, it’s $600 a ton, but it would only cover 180 square feet. Another idea is pine needles, we can buy them in bulk.” The children at Brownsville have not been able to use the swings because of a lack of comfort underneath them, Stendeback advised that, “Why don’t we use mulch until we find something different. It’s going to get cold soon and those kids need to enjoy the swings, mulch is easy to remove once we find something to put down there.” The board agreed to put mulch down until there was a better solution.

Pam Deig said that she will be meeting with Superintendent Lee at the school board meeting on October 21. Deig, along with board member Tom Knasel, will be presenting a powerpoint to the board to show the new playground design and the progress they have achieved. 

Suzy Pretzsch talked about including the Brownsville School Foundation in the Corn Days parade, “we will have a couple banners and pamphlet’s made to hand out, along with lots of candy.” Ferrell Hospital graciously offered to donate candy bags for their participation in the Corn Days parade.

Kathy Price reminded the board that the Chili Supper at Brownsville School will be on October 17 from 5:30 pm until 8:00 pm. There will be a raffle for chairs and a weekend in St. Louis at the Fabulous Fox Theatre, along with a silent dessert auction. 

The meeting adjourned, their next meeting will be held on October 15 at 6:30 pm.