By Robin GOLDSWORTHY
This year folks had to beware of not only the ides of March but of Smart-a-thon 2017. The annual fundraiser benefitting the Mary Pinola/CV Chamber of Commerce Education Fund was held at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital and hosted 33 teams of players (each team had a minimum of four players). A variety of businesses and organizations were represented at the event including CV Sheriff’s Station, USC-VHH, Glendale Unified School District, J’s Maintenance, Rose Bowl Aquatics Center, CV Town Council, Glendale Clean & Beautiful, and Rosemont Middle School (Rosemont Rocks). A record eight teams, all in matching T-shirts, came from the local Y.
Coordinated by fund creator Mary Pinola, the afternoon included light-hearted fun while raising money for educational programs throughout the Crescenta Valley.
St. Patrick’s Day was the theme of the event, with a nod to the now-closed Verdugo Hills Golf Course. CV Chamber President Calvin “Kaipo” Chock presented a plaque from the ninth hole on the Verdugo Hills Golf Course to USC-VHH CEO Keith Hobbs to commemorate the occasion when Hobbs proposed to his wife. Not long after, civic leader Steve Pierce burst on the scene yelling “Fore!” and saying he was a golfer who got lost on the course and needed help finding his golf ball.
Then it was time to get down to business. Smart-a-thon question sheets were handed out to teams and participants got down to answering trivia questions. When it was over, the team from Congressman Adam Schiff took first place.
“Perhaps that is why Schiff is the minority chair of the House Intelligence Committee,” said Pinola.
Additionally a drawing was held for the non-profit teams in attendance. The Crescenta Valley Instrumental Music Dept. and the Assistance League of Glendale were drawn and each received $500 for their charity. A special Pot O’ Gold drawing was won by Joe Kroening’s team, Pearls of Africa.
“All of these efforts are made to build the Education Fund which is invested with the Community Foundation of the Verdugos (special thank you to Edna Karinski whose guidance is invaluable),” stated Pinola. “Thanks to all of the good-hearted people many of whom have been contributing to the Education Fund since we first started the project in 1990.”
She added that the Education Fund has grown to over $375,000 in principal held at the CFV and over $215,000 has been awarded over the years to programs and leadership in the Crescenta-Cañada Valley.
The next Smart-a-thon is scheduled for March 7, 2018.