All S[auth] aints Catholic School Principal Scott Schoen displays a guitar autographed by members of The Eagles. The guitar is one of several autographed items which will be featured in the silent auction at Saturday’s 20th annual Mardi Gras Dinner and Dance. (Randal Seyler Photo)
A Roswell tradition continues Saturday when the 20th annual All Saints Catholic School’s Mardi Gras Dinner and Dance returns to the Roswell Convention & Civic Center.
“Our Mardi Gras event is a lot of fun for the community,” said Larie Garrett, president of the All Saints Catholic School School Board. The event is not limited to school families or church members, Garrett said, but is open to the entire Roswell community.
“This is the 20th year for our dinner, and it is incredible the way it has grown,” said Bertha Reyes, a teacher at All Saints who has attended the Mardi Gras event every year since 1994.
“In the beginning, it was just a potluck dinner before Lent.”
Reyes said the dinner has grown in popularity over the years. “It’s been a lot of fun turning the dinner into a tradition,” Reyes said.
Garrett said this year’s silent auction is going to feature some very special items — including guitars signed by Bruce Springsteen and members of The Eagles, autographed movie posters from “Rocky” and “The Hunger Games” and even autographed sheet music from One Direction.
“We have partnered with a charity fundraising firm to offer these memorabilia items in the silent auction,” Garrett said. There will also be local items from numerous local businesses that are longtime supporters of All Saints Catholic School, as well as the Mardi Gras dinner.
One popular silent auction tradition is the decorated crosses created by each class of students, Garrett said.
“Not only is this our 20th year, this year the dinner also falls on the Saturday before Fat Tuesday, which is the traditional last day of Mardi Gras before Ash Wednesday,” Garrett said.
“There aren’t that many venues in Roswell where adults can go out and dance and have fellowship, without going to a bar,” she said. “There will be a cash bar available at the dance, but the event is held in the Roswell Civic Center, which is a wonderful venue.”
The crowning of the King and Queen of Mardi Gras is also a highlight of the evening. Last year’s King and Queen were Adam and Cassi Rincon, and Garrett said there will be a number of past Kings and Queens vying for this year’s title since this is the 20th anniversary of the event.
Principal Scott Schoen said he attended the event last year for the first time, “It was a blast,” he said. “I have already had people calling asking when the Mardi Gras dinner is going to be held.
“I also have relatives who were here last year and they enjoyed the dinner so much they are flying in from Minnesota again this year to attend.”
“We really want to thank our sponsors,” Garrett said. “We have such wonderful support here in the community, it is a real blessing to the school to have so many great supporters, not only for the Mardi Gras dinner, but for the school as well.”
The evening will feature a catered Cajun dinner buffet and music by DJ Louis Najar, Garrett said.
There will also be a silent auction, the King and Queen election, a King Cake prize drawing and a photo booth.
Participants wearing Mardi Gras masks and/or costumes will be entered into a special prize drawing.
Tickets are available at All Saints Catholic School, 2700 N. Kentucky Ave., in Roswell. Tickets are $35 per person.
For more information, visit allsaintsmardigras.com or call the school at 627-5744.