Unleash your inner child for local education coalition

No kidding: The Asheville-Buncombe Education Coalition wants a bunch of adults to get together and act childlike.

Be a kid, for a kid: In a snapshot from last year’s Playground Classic, participants compete in the Rubber Chicken Toss, one of many unconventional challenges at the fundraiser.

On Thursday, Feb. 28, the coalition will stage the third annual Ingles Playground Classic at the cavernous Blue Ridge Motion Pictures studios in east Asheville. The fun—er, competition—runs from 2 to 6:30 p.m.

The Classic has evolved into a multifaceted party/rivalry. On the party side, there will be a preview celebration, a meal, adult beverages and door prizes. But the focus may well be on the good-natured (but hard-fought) rivalry: As many as 36 four-person teams, each representing a local business or organization, will compete in games of mental and physical skill ranging from paper-airplane and rubber-chicken tosses to an office-chair race. Several winners will receive prizes, and the top team will get to hold the event trophy—a creation of local metal artist Seebo—for the coming year.

Individuals are free to sign up, at $75 each, which includes the food and booze. Four-person teams will pony up $250 to enter. All proceeds will benefit the ABEC, which, along with 21 partner agencies, coordinates tutoring and mentoring services in Asheville and Buncombe County’s public schools.

Of course, the organization’s work is “very serious business,” notes Interim Executive Director Kathi Ballard. “But we hope that by having some fun while raising needed funds, people will be inspired to get even more involved.”

Many teams have already committed to the competition, but there’s still a little time remaining to sign up. If you’re interested, contact ABEC Marketing Coordinator Elisabeth Bocklet at 236-1128 by Monday, Feb. 25.

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About Jon Elliston
An Asheville-based mountain journalist: Former Mountain Xpress managing editor. Investigations and open government editor at Carolina Public Press. Senior contributing editor at WNC magazine.

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