DOUBLE THE MONEY: 40th annual Drawdown a success for Vicksburg Catholic School

Published 2:53 pm Thursday, February 23, 2023

The 40th annual Drawdown fundraiser was held by the Vicksburg Catholic School last Sunday at Levee Street Warehouse.

Kristi Smith is a teacher and the Director of Development & Alumni Affairs at Vicksburg Catholic School and was the head organizer for the event.

“It’s just grown and grown over the last 40 years,” Smith said. “It’s our largest fundraiser, and it goes to help with the everyday operations at the school.”

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The “drawdown” portion of the fundraiser is essentially a lottery. Ticket sales fund a cash pot, for which all attendees receive a ticket. Tickets are placed in a barrel and chosen at random throughout the night. When a ticket is called, the attendee is out of the running.

Attendees indicate on their tickets whether or not they are willing to share the pot when there are only 20 tickets left in the barrel. For the 40th anniversary of the fundraiser, the pot was increased from $10,000 to $20,000.

Smith explained that as the tickets are pulled from the barrel, whoever is willing to split can stay in the drawing.

“But if you’re not willing to split, if that ticket is not signed, then you come out unless you’re the very last one left,” she said. “If you’re the very last one left and you’re not willing to split, then you win the $20,000.”

Last Sunday, nine people were willing to split the pot, each walking away with $2,200.

Another major part of the school’s annual Drawdown is the silent auction, for which members of the community donate the items available and of which there was quite a bit to choose from.

“We get a lot of outdoor items. We had a cooker, we had a couple of pieces from 601 Sports,” Smith said. “We had a gun, we had a bow, just a wide variety of over 100 items this year.”

Students also help out with donations for the auction.

“We do class projects in our elementary classes, and those are always really hot items,” Smith said. “And the kids make those projects themselves. Particularly, that’s hot for the parents because every parent gets involved in the bidding for those class projects.”

Smith added that the turnout for this year’s event was excellent, having sold all 500 tickets available, with each ticket covering two people.

The school didn’t disclose the full amount that was raised that the drawdown, but Smith confirmed that it was a record in the history of the event.