Submitted by River Falls Forward Foundation

The River Falls Forward Foundation is planning its fifth annual Holiday Family Concert and Fundraiser, set for Sunday, Dec.3, at River Falls High School. This year's concert features Colleen Raye, Tim Patrick and Debbie O'Keefe.

Doors open at 2 p.m. with a social hour, silent auction and bake sale. The concert starts at 3 p.m. Tickets are available at First National Bank, Dick's Fresh Market and Selah Vie Bistro and Coffee Cottage.

The Forward Foundation is a non-profit organization, separate from the River Falls Public Schools, that serves as the means for private giving to public schools in River Falls. Established in 2012, the Forward foundation raises private funds to support programs beyond the core school district budget.

To date, the Forward Foundation has awarded more than $106,000 for innovative projects in River Falls public schools. The organization has several fundraisers each year to support teacher grants.

In October, a Wind and Appetizer event was held at Belle Vinez. Upcoming events include a Holiday Concert and Dueling Pianos.

2017 grant recipients have included:

• "CNC Shopbox." Teacher recipient: Paul Haugland. Electronic bit for a computer enables students to create designs on wood/metal."

• Welding Simulator." Teacher recipient: Ryan Pechacek. The welding simulator refines basic welding skills, learn proper welding technique and explore welding career paths.

• "Thermocycler." Teacher recipient: Dan Hoffman. The Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) is a process involving amplifying small quantities of DNA, used to study DNA through the process of DNA fingerprinting and DNA sequencing.

• "Injection Molder and Vacuum Former." Teacher recipient: Kevin Dorn. The injection molder will be used to make wheels for the eighth grade Meyer Middle School shop students' dragster vehicles, thus reducing the cost of these consumable wheels in the future.

Grants that aid families and education included Wi Fi Hotspots and Buddy Baggies.

• "Wi-Fi Hotspots." Teacher recipient: Nate Bingenheimer. This allows access for students whose families may not be able to afford high-speed internet service in their homes or to students who may live in rural areas that do not have access to high-speed internet connection, through a Wi-Fi hotspot program.

• "Buddy Bags." Teacher recipient: Becky McAleavey.  Provide ways for families to share literacy and learning experiences at home.

Additional classroom grants included:

• Breakout Boxes. Teacher recipients: Deb Ottman, Heather Boleman and Liz Kumershek,

• Thinkers and Tinkers. Teacher recipients: Jayne Hoffman, Peggy Kugel and Lori Sather

• White Board Paint. Teacher recipients: Rita Thorson and Nick Stenske.

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