FCC Raises a Glass to Fund the Arts


Photo by: Jorge Rodriguez

Fresno City College hosted “Toasting the Arts,” an event to celebrate and fundraise for Fine, Performing, and Communication Arts division at the Old Administration Building on Friday, Oct. 20, 2017.

Story By: Marco Rosas, Entertainment Editor

Fresno City College’s plays, music concerts and dance recitals offer many people the chance to watch the shows staff and students work so hard to put on.

But it takes more than hard work to make sure these shows take place— it takes success in fundraising to get things going.

In an effort to raise funds for FCC’s fine arts and communication programs, Friends of the Arts and FCC put together the thirtieth annual Toasting The Arts formal dinner and auction fundraiser in the OAB courtyard on Oct. 20.

“Our mission is to help, support, fund and promote the arts at FCC,” Friends of the Arts’ board president Julio Treviño said.

The fundraiser offered many items donated by members of the community and faculty that attendees could bid on at any point throughout the evening.

The items at the silent auction varied from handmade teddy bears to home-cooked pastries and even a season pass to the Selma Arts Center.

Faculty and community members mingled in their Sunday best to show their support FCC’s arts.

“It’s nice to gather with people you know, people who share your values for the arts, people who put on the performances and enjoy all of that together,” said Jackie Ryle, who emceed the occasion and has worked with several departments at FCC. Friday night was her first role as master of ceremonies.

“They asked me if I would be the emcee at the auction and I said absolutely,” Ryle said. “I didn’t know about it before but now that I’m aware of it I will always come back.”

Ryle brought much enthusiasm to the event and along with Treviño, made sure the night went as planned without a hitch.  

The evening began with appetizers and wine at 6 p.m. as attendees were serenaded by FCC’s Jazz Combo and Guitar Ensemble lead by directors Mike Dana and Kevin Cooper.

Following the Jazz Combo and Guitar Ensemble’s performances. Attendees were asked to take their seats for dinner and a show as the City Singers lead by Julie Dana and the New Wrinkles Chorus took the stage.

After the last performance, attention was brought back to why so many faculty and community members had come together in the first place: to raise funds.

A live auction was held in which several unique items, such as a personal performance by the City Singers, were auctioned off in real time. Some items were sold at $650 or more, adding toward the fundraiser’s ultimate goal.

“Last year we raised $15,000-$16,000, which is great,” Treviño said. “and we’re hoping to match that this year.”