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REACH Waupun Hosts Fundraiser Event at The Rock

WAUPUN — REACH Waupun held a fundraiser banquet Saturday evening at The Rock Golf Club in Waupun. The “Evening of Elegance” was presented by Homan Auto Group and sponsored by over two dozen local businesses and families. 

REACH Waupun is a community improvement program aimed at mentoring children who need extra community support. According to their website, REACH is committed to “improving the physical, social, emotional, and economic health and well-being of Waupun area youth through building relationships and providing opportunities.”

REACH regularly hosts fundraiser events to keep the programs going for their students, including a previous bowling event held at Jud-Son’s last month. 

Mayor of Waupun Rohn Bishop gave a short speech at the beginning of the event, giving special thanks to his wife Jennie for attending events with him, and thanks to Tyler Schultz for his support.

“Back in late January or early February I had the opportunity—because Jane invited me over to REACH Waupun—to take a tour,” Mayor Bishop said. “There’s not a lot to tour, it’s a small spot, but what was important was the message: what REACH Waupun does in the community, and what a lot of people don’t see.”

“One of the misnomers out there is that if you’re a mentor you’re getting some kind of bad kid or a naughty kid who’s in trouble, and that’s not the case,” Mayor Bishop continued. “A lot of these are kids with parents who are split up for whatever reason, or deployed in the military, or some passed away. In one case the younger brother or sister has serious special needs and that takes up all the mom’s time. So the mentor means a lot to these kids. And it’s this organization that looks out for them, and I think it’s so important to look out for the kids of this community and Jane and the whole group deserves a round of applause for all that they do.”

“The last thing I wanna do is thank all the people sponsoring this event. If you follow me in the news you know I make a stink once in a while and I’m trying to have the city more buying locally. One of the reasons for that is sometimes buying locally means it costs us more, but if you look at all the sponsors for this event and they’re all local businesses. We’re a local community and it’s local businesspeople who step up and support things like REACH Waupun, or the Kiwanis, or Rotary, or Little League or softball and soccer.”

“REACH Waupun is important and this event wouldn’t be happening without Homans, and I’d like to take a moment to thank Mark Homan and Homan Auto Group this year,” Mayor Bishop concluded. 

Following Mayor Bishop’s speech, Nick Rusch invited REACH leadership Jayne Harmsen and Vanessa Paul to the podium to give a few words.

Harmsen spoke about the various programs that REACH offers, including the mentorship program, school supply drives, sports grants, and clothing drives. The mentors and mentees in the audience were recognized along with members of the REACH board of directors. 

Vanessa Paul spoke in depth about REACH One and the mentor program they offer. Mentors commit to spending four hours a month with a child with the program, which REACH offers a variety of options for activities.

After the speeches were completed, the event moved to live entertainment from “Magical Mentalist” Jym Elders. Mentalism is a performance art where mentalists perform acts of highly developed intuitive ability that appear to be almost psychic. WPN was able to interview Elders after the event, which will be published Tuesday evening.

The event was closed out by a drawn raffle, a 50/50 raffle, and a live auction. 

Table Sponsors:
Ballweg Implement
Brooks Shoes
Central Cable Contractors
City of Waupun
Andy Glewen
Horicon State Bank
Homan Auto Group
Homan Family Dental
Municipal Well & Pump
National Exchange Bank & Trust
SIA Insurance
Thrivant/Jonathan Leonard
Milan Vande Zande
Werner Harmsen

Additional Donors
Sharon Bos
Guth’s Candy
Edward Jones, Rich Matravers
Friends of REACH Waupun
Gysber’s Jewelry
Kartechner Brothers, LLC
Mike’s Wild Boar
Radio Plus
Rock River Country Club
Shiny Wash
O’Conner, Wells & Vander Werff, LLC
W & D Navisd Excavating
WDS Construction