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School ‘Fun-Raiser’ on the Estuary Set for Sunday

Alameda public schools’ Pirates in Paradise “fun-raiser” will take place on Sunday.

The October 16 event will include dragon boating, canoeing, rowing, whale boating, kayaking, riding in outrigger canoes and more from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Bridgeside Shopping Center at Blanding Avenue, near the Fruitvale Bridge. There will also be face painting for the kids and free information from local yacht clubs, boating clubs and an America’s Cup organization.

Organizers, like Deborah Wright, say a highlight of the day’s activities will be the “Battle of the Paddle” between members of the Alameda Fire Department and Alameda Police Department, who will be competing in dragon boats during a boat regatta.

Community members are asked to come enjoy the friendly contest between members of the police and fire departments and watch an exhibition crew race put on by Oakland Strokes. Donations of $10 per adult and $5 per child will be greatly appreciated by Alameda school students and their supporters, as proceeds from the event will benefit the Alameda Education Foundation.

“This event is a great way to introduce the community to our hidden treasure — Alameda’s beautiful waterfront,” said Wright, which includes “the incredible waterfront of the Alameda-Oakland Estuary.”

“Pirates in Paradise is a way of giving back and supporting our schools,” said Dom Weaver of the Alameda Firefighters Association, an event sponsors. “Supporting our youth is essential to their ability to grow to becoming contributing members of our community.”

Alameda Education Foundation President Bill Sonneman says local businesses are very involved in helping the Island’s public schools. “Our schools are in a difficult position these days due to the drastic budget cuts from the State,” said Sonneman. “It really is up to the community to ensure that quality education continues in Alameda, and we are thrilled to have the support of so many waterfront and local businesses to make that happen.”

Recently, the education foundation received about a dozen donations of $500 that are being given to teachers and program leaders to support student learning through the group’s Adopt a Classroom project. The organization would like to have 100 classrooms “adopted” this school year.

Janet Levaux