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Waldo Pafford Elementary hosts hurricane benefit
waldo pafford benefit
Waldo Pafford Mass Choir performs during the Waldo Pafford showcase. - photo by Kayla Gamble

Waldo Pafford Elementary School hosted a Hurricane Dorian benefit showcase on Sept. 25. The charitable event started at 6 p.m. in the Waldo Pafford gym and treated attendees to a numerous acts including two dance routines and a variety of singing acts. While most of the participants were either current or former Waldo Pafford students or faculty, a handful came from other schools, including a hype man for the event, Trey Searles of Frank Long Elementary, who kept the crowd cheering and laughing throughout the night.

Waldo Pafford Principal Valarie Lawson and school music teacher, Errol Roach, spearheaded the benefit. Lawson stated that she originally came up with the idea shortly after Hurricane Dorian hit. The school district had been out for several days by then. News about the devastation caused by the event was being reported in detail and Lawson wondered how she could help hurricane victims. 

“We were trying to think of a way that was different from what, you know, bringing in donated goods,” Lawson said, “So I was driving to work one day and I just thought what if we do a hurricane concert.” 

She immediately went to Roach. 

Notices for the benefit were posted on Waldo Pafford social media, flyers were hung on school grounds and shown on the classroom communication app ClassDojo.

Tickets were limited and could be purchased for $5 in advance and for $10 at the door. Two-hundred tickets were sold, making about $1,200 by 4 p.m. the afternoon of the benefit. 

The gym was packed with supportive relatives who were there both to see the acts and to watch the faculty choir and student choir.  

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