Andona’s Clown Town returns Oct. 8-9 with carnival rides and lots of fun for families.
It’s the local nonprofit’s 65th annual fundraiser, as the organization approaches its 70th anniversary in 2022, said Jennifer Sloan, Andona’s secretary.
The nonprofit, which was founded in 1952 to give back to the town and youth, annually gives out $10,000 in college scholarships, $10,000 in summer camp scholarships and another $25,000 in small grants to schools, local teams and clubs that serve Andover’s youth. Clown Town has been its largest fundraiser since 1956, Sloan said.
Because of the pandemic, the organization pushed the event from it’s typical May weekend. They continued funding projects and scholarships throughout the pandemic, however, like other nonprofits Andona did face some financial setbacks.
“Not having a fundraiser put a dent into our financials, so we are hoping to make that up this year and we are planning a traditional Clown Town for the third weekend in May next year,” Sloan said.
However, the organization is continuing with a fundraiser started last year called “Boo Bags” that are goodie bags of treats and trinkets people can buy to leave at a friend or neighbor’s house to “Boo” them, Sloan said.
The organization is also in the process of creating a 2022 calendar as a fundraiser, Sloan said. The organization is soliciting hand-drawn art from youth impacted by Andona.
“We are really hoping to see artwork from some kids who have received scholarships or camperships or from clubs or teams who we’ve helped throughout the years,” Sloan said. “It doesn’t have to be fancy, just something meaningful about how Andona has helped them so that we can see that connection back.”
Over the years the organization has grown into a specific community niche helping individual students, schools and organization fund small projects, Sloan said. and over the years the need has only continued to rise, she said.
“With our fundraising we enable so many of the sports teams and activities in town to help them with everyday expenses like uniforms and equipment,” Sloan said.
Sloan also thanked the many supportive businesses donating food including Ultimate Perk and 34 Park that will be for sale. She also thanked Lillian Montalto Signature Properties International and Pfizer, which are the two largest corporate sponsors this year.