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Baker Buddies: Fundraiser to benefit student club

By Staff | Nov 13, 2014

A fundraiser on Saturday in Cape Coral will benefit an Ida S. Baker High School student club.

The Fifth Annual Baker Buddies Bash will take place from 1 to 5 p.m. at Miceli’s Restaurant on Matlacha. The event will feature live music by the Ida S. Baker Jazz Ensemble, as well as two local bands and the headliner, Strange Arrangement. The proceeds raised will go to the Baker Buddies.

Theresa Morosco, co-advisor of the student club, along with Jennifer Mackler, explained that Baker Buddies partners general education students at the high school with students in the Life Skills program. The mission of the student club is to promote social awareness and acceptance of all types of people.

“It’s a good program because it supports the friendships that develop between typical developing students and students with intellectual disabilities, which brings an awareness to everyone,” she said.

The annual Baker Buddies Bash is currently the only fundraiser that the club organizes.

“We do a lot of out-of-school social gatherings,” Morosco said, citing an outing to the movies or a hockey game as some examples of what the students do. “It (the fundraiser) supports our club.”

“We don’t ever want a kid to say they can’t participate in Baker Buddies because they can’t afford to,” she said.

In its fifth year now, the Baker Buddies Bash first started as a fundraiser that also showcased the student club. Organizers then added live music to it, turning it into a community celebration.

“It gives an opportunity for all these families to meet,” Morosco said of the students.

Last year, the fundraiser brought in approximately $3,000 to $3,500.

“We filled Miceli’s,” she said.

Organizers are hoping to raise money more this year.

“This year, we’re adding to it a silent auction,” Morosco said. “I’d like to see $4,000.”

On Saturday, the Jazz Ensemble will take from the stage from about 1 to 2 p.m. Next will be two local bands, which will perform from 2 to 3 p.m. Strange Arrangement will then play from 3 to 5 p.m.

“They’ve been supporters of ours for the whole five years,” she said of the headliner. “They play all original music – very upbeat, very meaningful.”

The silent auction will run from 1 to 4 p.m. Some of the items up for bid are a silver necklace from Dunkin’s Diamonds valued at $185 and a week’s stay at a cabin in Asheville, North Carolina.

Morosco pointed out that the cabin stay is worth between $1,500 and $3,300.

“We’ve got about a half of a dozen gift baskets, ranging in value from $20, $30, on up to $100, $200,” she said. “We’ve got a couple massages. We’ve got a gift certificate to a hair salon.”

“People need to bring their checkbooks and be prepared to spend money,” Morosco added.

Miceli’s is donating 25 percent of its food profits during the fundraiser to the club.

Baker Buddies will have a booth on hand with information on the program.

Organizers encouraged to public to come out and join the fun.

“Outside of helping to support our program, it also will just warm everybody’s hearts to see the friendships that develop between these kids,” she said.

Baker Buddies is accepting last-minute donations for the silent auction.

For more information about the Fifth Annual Baker Buddies Bash, or to donate items for the silent auction on Saturday, contact Theresa Morosco at (239) 340-0872.

Miceli’s Restaurant is at 3930 Pine Island Road.