On September 10, 2016, veteran nonprofit, Operation Enduring Warrior (OEW) conducted its second annual fundraiser called Operation Chew-N-Brew at Skydive Paraclete XP in Raeford, NC. The event was held in conjunction with OEW’s participation in the Ft Bragg Spartan Sprint obstacle course race held earlier that day at Smith Lake Recreation Area. This event allowed OEW to integrate with the local Fayetteville and Raeford communities and establish long-term relationships.
Thanks to Ashley Wilson of 95.7FM WKML, Nashville Recording Artist Luke Combs offered to headline our event. WKML invited OEW to speak about the event on the air numerous times and spread the message to the local community. On Friday WKML hosted two of OEW’s Adaptive Athletes on the morning show and allowed them to share their stories and what OEW means to them. The announcement of Luke Combs attending the fundraiser spiked ticket sales to 667. Luke changed his flight back to Nashville just to volunteer his time at the event. His participation was instrumental in the success of our event. His songs kept the party upbeat and lively as we lead up to the fireworks show sponsored by Skydive Paraclete XP.
The event featured live music played by local Fayetteville artists Chase Mitchell and The Chris Cox Band. The opening ceremony was lead by eight OEW skydive graduates conducting a skydive into the festival area followed by the Special Forces Association Parachute Team jumping a 40 x 60 banner of the Stars and Stripes to our National Anthem.
OEW has always been committed to providing financial transparency to all of our sponsors and supporters. Operation Chew-N-Brew was a resounding success and one of our best fundraisers to date. OEW brought in $50,386 while only spending $17,269 leaving a profit of $33,116 for the event. Our largest expenses included merchandise purchases, food, and other administrative items such as tent rental.
The outstanding food for the event was prepared and served by PK’s Bar & Grill which is located at Skydive Paraclete XP. All of the beer for the event was donated by local breweries and distributors: Railhouse Brewery, Southern Pines Brewing, R. A. Jefferies, Aviator Brewery, and Healy Wholesale.
OEW team members and volunteers set out in the months leading up to the event to ask businesses for sponsorship and silent auction items. The Fayetteville area and surrounding communities’ response was above and beyond what we expected. OEW raised almost $6,100 in sponsorship donations before the event and over 100 items for the silent auction.
Over the past two years, OEW has become more tied into the greater Ft. Bragg area communities. The personal relationships with local business owners have been the key to our success in conducting local fundraisers. We hope to see you all at the 2017 Operation Chew-N-Brew where we will continue raising funds for our nation’s wounded veterans.
For more information contact: Scott Blough at 910 987-2209.
Operation Enduring Warrior is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization with the mission to honor, empower and motivate our nation’s wounded veterans by providing outlets of physical activity and mental fortitude; allowing them to see beyond perceived limitations and excel toward personal goals. Our team strives to support the needs of each Adaptive Athlete, both physical and motivational, while providing a safe, supportive environment in which they can achieve set goals by their own strength and determination. We offer a wide range of programs, allowing our athletes to choose any or all that may suit their goals.