Group hopes to raise $50K on day of giving


JASPER — The City of Jasper will come alive Friday for the Jasper LEADs day of giving, themed “Give Where You Live.”

The Jasper LEADs campaign is raising $8 million for the Jasper Cultural Center, Jasper Community Arts Commission, the Astra Theatre and the Courthouse Square project.

The campaign has already raised over $4 million in pledges — including the $1.7 million matching grant from Jim and Pat Thyen that kicked off the campaign — from the corporate phase of the campaign that took place in 2016.

Friday’s day of giving opens the campaign to donations from the general public. The Jasper LEADs team set a goal of $50,000 for the day and has already received roughly $20,000 in pledges.

“It makes me hopeful that we’ll make our goal,” said Linda Kahle, a member of the marketing committee that planned the day of giving. “I don’t know if we will, but it makes me hopeful.”

Several local businesses came on board to help make the Day of Giving a success.

Fit Together Fitness, Downtown Fitness, B&B Fitness and Firehorse Yoga are all hosting public workout classes in the morning to kick off the day. The yoga class will take place at 8:30 a.m. at the Jasper Train Depot, across the street from the Hoosier Desk site where the Cultural Center will be.

Several local restaurants including Azura, Mad Batter, McDonald’s and Snaps will donate part of their mealtime sales to Jasper LEADs or collect donations. Local businesses such as Chocolate Bliss, Green Thumb, Olinger’s Diamond Center and Siebert’s are doing the same.

“We’re really hopeful that the entire day people will get out and shop and support our local businesses that are supporting us,” Library Director Christine Golden said.

The Jasper Public Library and Jasper Arts Commission are also teaming up to host family-centered activities during the day.

In the morning, playtime and a craft activity will be available at the Jasper Library Annex, 1103 Main St., for toddlers and preschool children.

After school at the Train Depot, the library and arts will offer a crayon craft based on the book “The Day the Crayons Came Home.”

To end the day, A Very Big Show (of Support) will take to the stage at the Jasper Arts Center auditorium on College Avenue. The family-friendly variety show will feature local talent performing acts from all the art forms, including visual arts and spoken word. Tickets are available for $10 in advance at or at the door. The show starts at 7 p.m.

The Jasper LEADs team took the idea for a day of giving from fundraising campaigns universities run with their alumni, Golden said.

“We just kind of took it and said this is a great way to get our community involved,” Golden said.

The focus for the day is on The Astra Theatre. Jasper LEADs has already raised its goals for the Cultural Center, so they’ve switched their focus to raising enough for Next Act, Inc. to complete the inside renovations to the Astra. Next Act received a grant for the exterior infrastructure work, but still needs roughly $400,000 for the interior.

“We want to see projects get done,” Golden said. “I think everyone in our LEADs group is ready to see (projects) done.”

Most of the day of giving donations will be collected through the GoFundMe campaign at

An anonymous donor will cover GoFundMe’s processing fees for the first $10,000 donated.

Anyone who donates $50 or more will get a Give Where You Live T-shirt. Donors of $1,000 or more will be recognized on the donor wall in the Cultural Center. The wall will be a wooden shelf with book- and art-related wooden sculptures to pay homage to Jasper’s woodworking history. Donors’ names will be carved on the spines of the books.

Although donors must give $1,000 to be on the donor wall, everyone who donates will be recognized in the Cultural Center somehow, Golden said. The LEADs team wants the entire community to feel like they have a place in the campaign, no matter how much they can donate.

“We don’t want to discourage anyone,” Golden said.

The fundraising will continue past Friday. The Jasper LEADs team will not stop until they’ve reached the $8 million goal, and other fundraising efforts may continue even after the goal is met.

Golden said the team would like to make “Give Where You Live” an annual event. For the next couple years, she said, the day may focus on off setting construction costs for the Cultural Center, but once the project is completed the day may switch gears to augment programming funds for the library and the arts. Regardless, the team wants to keep the community engaged and involved with the Cultural Center.

“I think we’re all very proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish this year,” Golden said.

The day’s full schedule of activities are:

• An email campaign beginning at 12:01 a.m. encouraging online gifts, as well as sharing the #GiveWhereYouLiveJasper message across personal social media channels.

• 5:15 a.m., Fit Together Fitness, RIPPED class

• 5:15 a.m., Downtown Fitness, P90X, $3 fee per person - 10 percent of sales of any shoes sold between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. will be donated.

• 5:50 a.m., B&B Fitness - Spin Class, $5 fee for non-members.

• 8:30 a.m., Community Yoga, outdoors at German American Plaza, sponsored by Firehorse Yoga (Jasper Train Depot in the event of inclement weather).

• All Day, Azura Cafe, enjoy a specialty drink created for #GiveWhereYouLiveJasper.

• All Day, Brew, enjoy a speciality cocktail created for #GiveWhereYouLiveJasper.

• All Day, Mad Batter, $1 of every glazed cookie will be donated to the campaign.

• All Day, Denny’s, Wendy’s, Grandy’s, Long John Silvers, 10 percent of sales will be donated.

• All Day, Shoney’s will have a donation bucket.

All Day, Cash donations will be collected at EJ and Dots, Illusions Spa, Jagged Edge, Just a Trace, McDonald’s, Siebert’s and Wilson Flowers.

• 10 a.m., Creative Time, Jasper Public Library Annex, babies and preschool-aged children. Enjoy a creative activity with toys, and arts and crafts.

• All Day, Finishing Touches, Chocolate Bliss, Just Whimsy, Olinger Diamond Center, Made with Grace, Aqua One Day Spa, percentages of sales will be donated.

• All Day, Green Thumb, 10 percent of plant and giftware sales at the Jasper store will be donated.

• All Day, Elements, create a “make-and-take” mixed-media art project (suitable for all ages and abilities), $10 fee donated toward the campaign.

• All Day, Ivy Manor, 10 tickets will be given away for the “Very Big Show (of Support)” at the Jasper Arts Center.

• All Day, Disinger Jewelers, percentage of sales donated, as well as $5 with each Jasper bracelet sold.

• All Day, Anna Von Salon & Boutique, 10 percent donation of any service.

• Noon-6:30 p.m., Snaps, $1 of every Moscow mule and mojito donated to campaign.

• 3:30 p.m., Jasper Library/Art Center, Creative Time held at the Train Depot. Enjoy a free art activity based on the popular book “The Day the Crayons Came Home”, open to all ages (donations accepted).

• 4-10 p.m., Schnitz Brewery & Pub, percentage of sales donated.

• 6 p.m.-midnight, Snaps, $1 donated for every dessert sold.

• 7 p.m., “The Very Big Show (of Support)”, a variety show featuring local talent, Jasper Arts Center, $10 ticket with full proceeds benefiting #GiveWhereYouLiveJasper.

For additional information about the campaign, visit,, or

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