At the Nov. 15 Board of Education of Charles County meeting, Keith Grasso and Sara Payne from the nonprofit, Rocktoberfest presented a check for $30,000 to the Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) fine and performing arts programs.
The donation is a collective effort from local and national businesses to further the resources of the fine and performing arts program at CCPS.
Every year since 2013, the La Plata Business Association (LPBA) has partnered with CCPS to put on a community-wide fine and performing arts event called Rocktoberfest. Since then, the LPBA has developed into the nonprofit, Rocktoberfest and was supported by nearly 60 local and national sponsors this year.
The event was set to be one of the best since the COVID- 19 pandemic put the in-person gathering on pause but was canceled due to heavy rain, Grasso said. “This year was keyed up to be the best Rocktoberfest ever, and I can control everything but the weather,” Grasso said.
The event is for community members to hear live music, purchase from local vendors and spend time with friends and family. “It is an amazing community event with three or four different stages set up and vendors around the place,” Tim Bodamer, CCPS fine and performing arts content specialist, said.
The event has “bands performing and rotating on the stages playing for the community, activities for the children and family, and CCPS high school jazz and marching bands,” Bodamer said.
The money raised from Rocktoberfest is donated to CCPS fine and performing arts programs. “We have gone from a 1,500 dollar donation from the first event to a $60,000 donation, the last time we had an event, before COVID,” Bodamer said.
Bodamer explained what the donation from LPBA has been used for. Some uses included providing instruments for students in need, adding to the CCPS instrument library, providing art supplies to enhance classrooms, hiring clinicians to work with students and teachers in classroom instruction, plus much more.