By Marty Denzer
Catholic Key Reporter
KANSAS CITY —Football games are fun to watch, especially if you’re part of a crowd, enjoying food and drinks, lots of big screen TVs, laughter, cheers and moans. The 2014 Chiefs Watch party to benefit the diocesan Bright Futures Fund, had the crowd, the food and drinks, the big screen TVs, the laughter, cheers and moans and, former Kansas City Chiefs and Chiefs Ambassadors auctioning off a variety of items. Held for the second year in a row at the Roasterie Coffee Bean Hanger, the honorary hosts for the sold out Nov. 20 watch party were Rita and Lamar Hunt, Jr.
The Bright Futures Fund, through its Strong City School Fund and the Honoring Family Scholarship programs, provides financial assistance to families, students and schools within the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph. The Strong City Schools —Holy Cross, Our Lady of Guadalupe and Our Lady of the Angels —are made more affordable to parents wanting Catholic education for their children through need-based scholarships.
The crowd in attendance, most sporting Kansas City Chiefs t-shirts, jerseys or at least wearing red and white, arrived early for the game, K.C. Chiefs vs Oakland raiders, and listened closely to a discussion from Chiefs insiders, including the event chairs Ken (a.k.a. Fuzzy) Kremer and his wife Lisa, Bobby Bell, Keith Cash and other former players, while perusing items in the silent and live auctions. Against a backdrop of burlap bags full of coffee beans and vintage coffee grinding and brewing equipment glowed a bright red and white 1964 1/2 Mustang convertible. The Mustang will be raffled off by the Bright Futures Fund in April 2015. It attracted attention from the crowd and from Chiefs Mascot, KC Wolf.
Several long tables laden with food from several area restaurants also attracted a lot of attention! Pizza, fried chicken, BBQ, Italian sausages and pasta, fruit and cheese were quickly eaten and the tables refilled. Bartenders served wine and beer. Roasterie coffee was also available.
During breaks in the game, the live auction took place. A Missouri mavericks fan pack; a Coach Bill Snyder autographed Kansas State football; autographed jerseys from Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith, tight end Travis Kelse, and from Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo; an autographed Jamaal Charles football; a framed team- autographed Sporting Kansas City jersey; a luxury suite and tickets to the Dec. 14 Chiefs vs Raiders game at Arrowhead Stadium; tickets, airfare and hotel stay for the Dec. 7 Chiefs at Phoenix Cardinals game; a print of the Pulitzer winning photograph from former Kansas City Royals third baseman George Brett’s retirement; the Tim Grunhard Show experience; a roof-top party at the Catholic Chancery downtown, with BBQ, beer, and Kansas City Chiefs Ambassador Walter White and his band and, a black and white Shih Tzu-Angel Doll mix puppy were bid on fast and furiously with the lucky winners all smiles, never mind that the football game wasn’t going in the Chiefs favor.
The silent auction featured tickets to MU Basketball, Sporting KC soccer, and Kansas City T-Bones baseball games, artwork, an autographed Bill Self KU basketball, tickets to the Karrin Allyson Quintet concert and a Pony Party from Storybook Stables.
Many in the crowd bought raffle ticket chances to win a 32 inch Samsung Smart TV or Blue Ray Player.
Jeremy Lillig, Managing Director of the Bright Futures Fund, said the watch party helped raise about $35,000 for scholarships.
To the kids at Our Lady of the Angels, Our Lady of Guadalupe and Holy Cross schools who will benefit from the scholarships, the crowd at the watch party were MVPs, most valuable people!