In what has become one of the Ozarks’ most successful fundraising partnerships, the Reeds Spring R-IV Education Foundation on Friday night received a check for $38,000 from Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede, proceeds of the foundation’s annual Reeds Spring Pack Night promotion.
The money will largely go to fund scholarships for 2014 graduates of Reeds Spring High School. Foundation Treasurer Jim Holt estimates that, over the first three years of the program, the foundation has awarded more than 60 scholarships. Many of these scholarships are matched by sponsors, including Dake-Wells Architets and Dixie Stampede, to create bigger awards.
This scholarship component plays into Dixie Stampede’s role in Pack Night. “It’s a large part of why we are able to have the event,” Holt said. “Dolly Parton is a strong supporter of education and giving kids the chance to pursue educational opportunities.”
This was the fourth year of the partnership between the Reeds Spring Education Foundation and Dixie Stampede, who in exchange for the foundation’s work selling tickets donates the night’s full proceeds, which have increased each year of the partnership. A guest speaker has become a part of the tradition as well. This year, former St. Louis Cardinals catcher Tom Pagnozzi held a meet-and-greet prior to the show, and also shared some insight and anecdotes from his career with the Cardinals. He spoke about the persistence and team work required to make it as a college and then pro athlete, and shared some stories about the four-Hall of-Fame managers (Whitey Herzog, Red Schoendienst, Joe Torre and Tony LaRussa) he played for while with the Cardinals, and how their leadership shaped his career.