By Karen Billing
The Rancho Santa Fe Community Center recently made a donation to the Rancho Santa Fe Fire Department, funds coming from the Community Center’s biggest fundraiser of the year, the Moroccan Fantasy Gala in May. The donation is pending approval from the RSF Fire District board and a specific amount will be announced in next week’s Review (Sept. 18).
The contribution fits the Community Center’s goal as a nonprofit to serve and support the community, especially an important resource such as the fire department, according to Molly Wohlford, Community Center board president.
“We were able to raise a nice amount of money (at the gala) and still be able to give back to the community,” Wohlford told the Rancho Santa Fe Association board at its Sept. 4 meeting. “We’re really proud of what we do at the center and we hope everyone will think about joining as a family.”
Wohlford is in her third year as president of the Community Center board. She said she joined the board because she felt it was important to make a difference in the community as the center had done so much for her family when they moved to Rancho Santa Fe in 2009.
She said her kids loved spending time at the center and she wanted to ensure there were programs for residents of all ages — she feels that they have accomplished that in the past few years.
“This summer’s children’s programs had some of the highest participation we’ve ever had,” Wohlford said, noting some even sold out. “Our fall programs are skyrocketing.”
Fall programs include dance, a variety of sports, art, kids’ yoga, surf camp and a new program called the American Food Tour, where children in kindergarten through fifth grade learn about food prep, whipping up American cuisine such as Navajo tacos and blueberry pie.
Other new programs for fall include Little Kickers soccer for preschool and kindergartners and mountainboarding, a cross between snowboarding, skateboarding and mountain biking.
For adults, the center offers yoga and Jazzercise classes and Friday, Sept. 19, marks the return of the Adult Dodgeball Tournament, which Wohlford said is a lot of fun. Adults have the opportunity to get out a little red ball-aggression and enjoy food and drinks included in the individual and team entry fees.
On Friday, Sept. 26, the center will hold its youth version of the dodgeball tournament for third through sixth graders, which includes pizza and drinks for all players.
The center is also gearing up for its 21st annual All Fore The Community golf tournament on Monday, Oct. 27, at the Rancho Santa Fe Golf Club. The golf tournament is its second biggest fundraiser of the year, helping the center run all of its programs and maintain its staffing levels. A $350 entry fee includes a round of golf, cart, lunch, swing analysis, prizes, after-party dinner and a hosted bar.
Wohlford said that while the RSF Community Center shares a parking lot with the RSF Association, it does not receive any funding from the RSF Association nor does the Community Center receive any federal or state funding. All of the money the nonprofit makes is due to fundraising, sponsorships and memberships.
“We work really hard to sustain where we are,” Wohlford said.
RSF Association President Ann Boon recently toured the RSF Community Center, visiting youth programs her own children didn’t have a chance to partake in as they didn’t grow up in Rancho Santa Fe.
“I’m absolutely amazed at what you do, it’s such a great asset for the community,” Boon said. “The contribution to the fire department is above and beyond the call of duty.”
To learn more or register for upcoming programs and events, visit rsfcc.org.