Held recently at the San Marco Catholic Church Parish Center, the fundraiser drew a large crowd which dined on a vast assortment of fine foods, desserts and of course, vino, all for the price of $25. As always, there were silent auctions and raffles, a $250 door prize and hours of smiles and laughter.
Rhonda Gloodt, the Squadron’s commander for 2018, said about 350 people attended the affair, which raised about $13,000, which will fund the boating education and safety classes the organization will provide to the community this year.“I was very, very pleased with the support from our businesses and from the community, extremely happy about that,” Gloodt added. “I just really want to thank everyone.” The Marco Island Sail and Power Squadron is part of District 22 of America’s largest non-profit boating organization, the United States Power Squadron. The organization is dedicated to making boating safer and more enjoyable by teaching classes in seamanship, navigation and related topics. The United States Power Squadron has nearly 35,000 members and more than 350 squadrons nationwide. On Marco, the Squadron provides:
A wide range of boating coursesFree vessel safety checks
Extended and overnight group boat trips for members, along with raft-ups
(gatherings where vessels are roped together to form a raft-like structure).
Monthly dinner meetings with guest speakers and other regular social events
Kathleen Reynolds was among the 50 Squadron volunteers who worked party, ferrying food from the kitchen to tables, tracking raffle outcomes, serving drinks and more for the Squadron’s sole annual fundraiser. She said joining the organization opened up a whole new world for her.“About six years ago I decided that since I had a house on the water and I had a lift, that I should get a boat and learn how to drive it,” she said. “So, I got the boat and started. I didn’t even know that it had to be in neutral before you turned it on, so I found the Power Squadron and I took their classes. I am never going to be a master, but I am safe enough to take myself and my family and friends out to enjoy the water.” The Marco Island Sail and Power Squadron was formed in 1978 and the group will celebrate its 40th anniversary at its Change of Watch ceremony, set for February 13 at the Marco Island Yacht Club.
For more information about the Marco Island Sail and Power Squadron, visit marcoislandsailandpowersquadron.org.