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Fundraiser a grand slam for athletics

Dawna Olsen, Damon Olsen, RebeccaPaduone and Ali Hussain along with approximately 240 people attended the fourth annual Dinner for the Diamond at Tim’s Toyota Auto Center in Prescott Saturday, April 18.The event raised over $52,000. (Les Stukenberg/The Daily Courier)

Dawna Olsen, Damon Olsen, RebeccaPaduone and Ali Hussain along with approximately 240 people attended the fourth annual Dinner for the Diamond at Tim’s Toyota Auto Center in Prescott Saturday, April 18.The event raised over $52,000. (Les Stukenberg/The Daily Courier)

The fourth annual Dinner for the Diamond gave Prescott High School Athletics a home run on Saturday, April 18, at Tim's Toyota. Featuring a live and silent auction, there was also a separate drawing for a 2015 Toyota Tacoma, which raised money for area high schools.

Organizer Jennifer Fairbairn was thrilled with the event's turnout, commenting that there were attendees who showed up half an hour before it started. She also noted that there were two fundraisers going on at the same time.

"Tonight, this is the PHS baseball boosters... our silent and our live auction benefit the baseball program," she said, stating that there were also scholarships given away. "The truck giveaway that's going to happen tonight... that benefits four area high schools."

The event generated more than $52,000 for the four schools.

Items in the silent auction included a deluxe candy station, $25 to Murphy's Restaurant, a signed Curt Schilling baseball card and four tickets for the June 6 Diamondbacks game. The live auction saw an embroiled battle over a private showing at Picture Show, which went to Tim's Toyota General Manager Ali Hussain for $900.

Originally, Fairbairn said, the Dinner for the Diamond was just something the baseball program did, which was eventually expanded to include all the public high schools in the area.

Mark Giligoski, athletic director for PHS, went into detail on Fairbairn's comment about the event's expansion.

"When we started off this relationship four years ago, it was strictly to help baseball, then it expanded to help all our athletic programs," Giligoski said. "Then in the last two years, it's given an opportunity for school clubs, athletic programs, all their booster groups to help raise money for their groups."

Giligoski also spoke of his gratefulness to Tim's Toyota, mentioning that since everything for the fundraiser was donated, the schools are able to collect 100 percent of the evening's profits.

And he was grateful for the number of people who came to show their support adding that, currently, the schools aren't going to be able to move forward with programs unless there is community support.

PHS Principal Stephanie Hillig said that the greatest aspect of the night was how Tim's Toyota opened up to the community and not just Prescott High School. However, she said the biggest thing is that all of the event's benefits goes down to the kids.

"The amount of money that Jen and this fundraiser makes for our kids is truly beneficial," Hillig said. "The players actually get to benefit from it."

Of the five finalists for the 2015 Toyota Tacoma, Chanella Fritts won the truck and said it was unbelievable that she did.

Fairbairn mentioned what will be done with the money generated from the tickets for the truck drawing. She said some schools will do site improvements, but other groups will use it for something special, such has how Future Business Leaders of America used it in order to get to nationals.

Follow Jason on Twitter @PrescottWheels

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