The 44th annual Pie Auction aims to raise more funds for school programming and the Cost of Living Allowance program
By Leslie Kilgore EBS CONTRIBUTOR
The Big Sky Parent Teacher Organization’s 44th annual Pie Auction will take place on March 22 at Montage Big Sky to support the Big Sky School District. Each year, the goal of the Big Sky PTO is to raise enough funds to support both school programs and funding for the Cost of Living Allowance program that the school staff depend on to offset the high cost of living in Big Sky.
Some of the annual school programs the Big Sky PTO supports include transportation, rentals and lessons for alpine and Nordic school ski days, as well as various field trips, classroom supplies and supplements, the high school musical production, the 10th grade Washington D.C. trip, the science fair and debate club, various author visits, and other unique educational experiences.
“Last year, we raised $250,000 that all went to help our staff and students,” Big Sky PTO president, Jennie Bibbins, said. “I think it’s fair to say the Pie Auction is one of Big Sky’s best fundraising events and helps set the Big Sky School District apart with exceptional programming.”
Bibbins said the event has been one of the longest and most successful fundraisers in Big Sky because it’s a chance for the entire school community to come together and celebrate while also raising significant funds that our schools depend on.
“It’s been a tradition in Big Sky and part of the community’s history for over four decades now,” Bibbins said.
In 2022, the PTO made a commitment to provide Big Sky teachers with a Cost of Living Adjustment. Since then, through community support and donations, CODA has raised over $195,000 to supplement the salaries of school district staff.
“The funds raised at the Pie Auction make a true difference in our schools,” Bibbins said.
The theme for this year’s event is “We Rock!” Parents, teachers and other attendees are encouraged to come in costumes from their favorite music genre.
“It’s been fun the past few years to see how much the community goes all out for the party, but also towards fundraising efforts by donating items for the auction, sponsoring a student experience, or bidding online,” Bibbins said.
When the PTO asked staff to share how they used their CODA funds last year, they received many notes that motivated their fundraising goals even more this year.
Some of the feedback the PTO received from school staff stated that it helped them make ends meet between paychecks, putting a down payment on a car, medical costs, work commute expenses and their heat bill during cold winters.
For more information on this year’s event, to purchase tickets or to donate items for the auction, visit: one.bidpal.net/pieauction2024/welcome