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St. Francis Xavier’s ‘FrancisPalooza’ gets parents rockin’

It was a rockin’ good time at the St. Francis Xavier School auction on April 5. Indeed, as members of the SFX school community banded together to raise funds for the school, one could see right away that it was a group effort, with important solo acts as well.

On that note — musical pun intended — such plays on words were a hallmark of the event, thanks to its “FrancisPalooza” theme. From the auction program to nametags that resembled concert passes, rock-and-roll lingo and lyrics brought the theme to life.

More than 200 items, packages, events and raffle prizes were up for auction, all listed by a related song title. Guests who wanted a day at Hawthorne Race Track, for example, could bid on “Wild Horses” (Rolling Stones, 1971), while people who coveted a set of Dr. Dre Beats headphones vied for them under the listing, “We’ve Got the Beat” (The Go-Gos’s, 1982.).

Throughout the evening, upwards of 575 guests grooved under a massive tent in the SFX parking lot, where they checked out auction items, sipped on drinks and munched on snacks and, in keeping with the vibe of the night, listened to live music on a main stage and a small “piano bar” set up in another corner (complete with comfy couches and, of course, some spontaneous sing-a-longs.)

St. Francis Xavier mom Elizabeth Cooley of La Grange said that the night was a true mashup of good times and a good cause. “It’s nice because it’s casual and because there is a song for everything and that starts some great conversations. You find yourself saying, ‘Oh, I remember that song!” or ‘We loved that concert!’” she remarked.

FrancisPalooza 2014 was chaired by SFX parents Pat and Kelly Brennan, Steve and Becca Merchant, Michael and Stef Schodrof and John and Val Walls. According to Becca Merchant, the event was the fundraising equivalent of a headline-act stadium tour. “FrancisPalooza was a great success. We are overwhelmed and so incredibly grateful for the generosity of our St. Francis Xavier school families and this great community,” Merchant declared, adding that proceeds from the auction will provide significant funds for building and classroom improvements, technology upgrades, general operating costs for the school and tuition assistance.

To learn more about St. Francis Xavier School and how to donate, visit http://www.sfx-lg.org/school or call 708-352-2175.

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