Edmonds Daybreakers Rotary announced Tuesday that the organization awarded a record amount of scholarship money during its recently-completed 2015 Edmonds Jazz Connection Festival.
“Because of the commitment from Daybreakers Rotary members and the generous support of sponsors, we were able to award $24,000 in scholarships and grants — a new record for Rotary/community support of our school music programs,” said Jazz Festival Chairman Chris Lindberg.
Sponsors included the Hazel Miller Foundation; the Hubbard Family Foundation; Dick Beresford- Beresford Booth Law Firm; Windermere Real Estate- Daybreaker Jamie Reece and wife Sarah; Alan Lawrence, Wells Fargo Advisors; Dale Terwedo, Daybreaker and owner of Terwedo Financials; Campbell Nelson Volkswagen; Doug’s Cadillac; Chermak Construction; Seattle Repertory Jazz Orchestra; Arista Wine Cellars and Housewares of Edmonds.
Lindberg said he is pleased at this year’s turnout and the community support received. A total of 600 students participated in the daylong event May 23, coming from all Edmonds School District high schools plus Cascade and Mariner high schools in Everett, Monroe High School, Arlington High School, Shorewood High School in Shoreline; South Albany High School in Albany, Ore. and Edmonds Community College.
The Edmonds Jazz Connection provides school programs and their students an opportunity to come together at the end of the school year to participate in a non-competitive performance event focused on three areas:
– Celebrating student successes and achievements
– Raising funds for scholarships to reward graduating seniors who plan to continue their education
– Awarding block grants to aid schools in continuing to strengthen their music program offerings.
The ultimate goal is to make superior music education even stronger and create opportunities for more students to participate if they desire, organizers say.
The Daybreakers club is not taking much of a break between the 2015 festival and getting started on next year’s event. An estimated 3,000 people attended performances at three downtown Edmonds venues: The Masonic Hall, Edmonds Theater and the Edmonds Conference Center. That may change next year as Edmonds Daybreakers Rotary is looking into moving the event into larger venues such as the Edmonds Center for the Arts.
The organization is also forming a new partnership with Seattle Repertory Jazz Orchestra. Organizers hope that more area schools will participate next year including Garfield, Roosevelt. Mercer Island, Wenatchee and Spokane’s Mead High School. These schools have music programs led by Seattle Repertory Jazz Orchestra members.
“We’re excited about our new partnerships and expanded opportunities these partnerships will bring,” Lindberg said. “Each year it keeps getting better and better!”