The Blaine County Journal News-Opinion - We've Got The County Covered

Blaine County Fair Foundation looking to meet 'Challenge grant'


December 6, 2017

The Blaine County Fair Foundation recently received a $1000 challenge grant. Laura Kleinjan, Foundation Secretary/Treasurer, said, "This is a great opportunity for others to double the value of their donation. The anonymous donor will match other gifts up to the $1000." Kleinjan added, "The timing of the challenge grant allows folks to make taxable deductions before the end of the year." The Fair Foundation was incorporated in November, 2016 and has since received certification from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) a 501(c)(3) organization. Donations are tax deductible.

The first project being pursue by foundation organizers is a new indoor arena at the Blaine County Fairgrounds. Kleinjan said, "Our first major goal is to raise about $20,000 to do site work and pour footings for an indoor arena." Several years ago Blaine County, through the efforts of Sheriff Glenn Huestis, was able to procure a new 100 by 200 foot metal building as surplus from Malmstrom Air Force Base in Great Falls. The Foundation hopes to raise the necessary funds to erect the building and replace some items the new building will need to be complete.

Promoters of the indoor arena say, "It's not just about horses." With a covered arena there could be other events as well-like 4-H stock shows when the weather is bad, even during the fair. There could be car shows under cover and other activities that are susceptible to weather conditions. Fair foundation activists believe such a facility would be a real asset to the area and allow various events to be staged year round.

Foundation fundraisers have already had some success with small grants from Triangle Communications and Northwest Farm Credit Services. A tourism grant application was also made to the Montana Office of Tourism and Business Development. An announcement regarding which organizations are awarded tourism grants is expected in December.

Fundraising has begun

The Foundation is in the midst of a month-long 50-50 raffle that began in November. A winning raffle ticket will be drawn on December 4 and 11 with a final drawing on December 18. Tickets can be purchased for each weekly drawing and all tickets from the four weekly drawings will be included in the final drawing on December 18. Raffle tickets are available in Chinook at Cenex and the Eagles Club, in Turner at the 241 Bar and in Harlem at Richman Insurance.

Foundation volunteers are hopeful that potential donors will take advantage of the challenge grant. Another way to increase the value of a gift that donors may not be aware of is an employee matching grant program. Some employers will match a gift given by an employee to a qualifying organization. These matching programs are often described in employee benefit packages or on a company website. Check to see if your employer offers a matching grant. It could increase the value of your gift.

You can make a tax deductible contribution to help erect the new indoor arena any time. Gifts given before the end of the year will be matched, up to $1000, by the anonymous challenge grant. Make checks payable to the Blaine Country Fair Foundation and note if you want the money to be used toward the indoor arena project. Mail to the Fair Board Foundation at Box 1207, Chinook, Montana 59523. You can call 945-1118 for information about making a gift, purchasing raffle tickets or helping with the efforts to secure the new indoor arena.


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