Educational Trust hosts cocktail party
Event raises more than $6,000 to help finance programs at the elementary school
It was the most successful event to date but there were mixed emotions as 130 guests attended the Stephen þÄì St. Edward Educational Trust eighteenth annual cocktail party at the historic Landmark Inn. Proceeds from ticket sales and donations were more than $6,000. It was a larger than usual turnout and many of the guests had specifically responded to the invitations to honor Ed Scharfenberger, 9
Photos by Roger Gavan Preparing to cut the cake, from left, Mary Juliano, newly elected president of the St. StephenþÄôs Educational Trust, Ed SharfenbergerþÄôs grandson, Ian Clark and Ann Vogel, past Secretary and one of the original members of the St. Stephen þÄì St. Edward Board of Trustees.
WARWICK — It was the most successful event to date but there were mixed emotions as 130 guests attended the Stephen - St. Edward Educational Trust eighteenth annual cocktail party at the historic Landmark Inn.
Proceeds from ticket sales and donations were more than $6,000. It was a larger than usual turnout and many of the guests had specifically responded to the invitations to honor Ed Scharfenberger, 94. He had recently stepped down as president of the Board of Trustees after 22 years at the helm of the organization he founded.
Less than a week before the event, however, Scharfenberger suffered a stroke and was hospitalized. His wife, Elaine, and members of his immediate family, who usually attend the annual party, were at his bedside.
Sharfenberger's grandson, Ian Clark, was the only member there to represent the family.
However, Geoffrey Green, owner of The Green Team Home Selling System, had donated the services of videographer Steve Dixon to video tape the event for the family.
Clark told the guests that his grandfather, a World War II veteran, was a fighter and was now in the fight of his life.
"I know my grandpa would not anyone to be worried or sad about him," he said. "He wants this to be a joyous occasion and something that will live on."
And as Scharfenberger would have wished, guests did enjoy a generous assortment of creative hors d'oeuvres, musical entertainment, and an open bar for three full hours.
One of the favorite attractions each year is the variety and quality of the appetizers created by Mike DiMartino, award-winning chef/owner of the Landmark Inn.
Richard Wiggins, a nightclub style singer/pianist, also returned to provide the musical entertainment for the evening.
'A voice for Catholic education'
Rev. Michael McLoughlin, pastor of the Church of St. Stephen, the First Martyr, gave the invocation and grace before meals.
"Ed would be thrilled at this turnout," said McLoughlin. "He was always a voice for Catholic education, He was the man who had the vision. And now he's fighting a difficult fight. He and his wife, married for 68 years, are teachers of God's love and fidelity."
McLoughlin asked everyone to join him in a special prayer for the Scharfenberger family.
Mary Juliano, newly elected president of the St. Stephen's Educational Trust, then spoke and introduced members of the Board of Directors.
"My husband and I and our five children are all products of Catholic schools," she said. "Collectively that's 98 years."
Juliano explained that money collected by the Trust would be used to help families in need who have children in St. Stephen - St. Edward School.
"We want them to know that if they want their children to attend a Catholic school, there's help available."
The Educational Trust was created in 1992 to help finance educational programs at the tuition supported elementary school.
The trust invests contributions made throughout the year to help support the school and in the past the monies have been used for tuition aide for poor families, improvements to the school facility and teacher appreciation awards among other projects.
Coming full circle
Coming full circle