CAL celebrates 40 years

By Ben Olson
Reader Staff

Forty years ago, the Community Assistance League was formed by a small group of philanthropists eager to create a nonprofit where local women could affect real change in Sandpoint. Beginning in 1979, CAL now boasts more than 260 members who are responsible for giving around close to $2 million to programs in Bonner County.

Whether through its community grant program or annual scholarships to graduating seniors, CAL continually gives back to the community as part of a mission to address the needs of the community “through research, discussion, planning, program development, fundraising and service.”

The organization, which has no paid director or staff, has also assisted in local events like the Panhandle Special Needs Olympics, the Kaleidoscope Art Enrichment Program, Junior Miss, the Afternoon Academy and the Festival at Sandpoint, which CAL produced for the first two years.

To commemorate the milestone, CAL is throwing a party at 2 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 18 at the Panida Theater. CAL board members and volunteers will perform light-hearted skits to keep the crowd entertained.

“Romp through our history and enjoy our silly wit!” organizers wrote in a statement.

There will also be champagne and cake served to all in attendance (and of age). Admission is free and open to the public, but donations are always happily accepted.

To support CAL, shop at upscale resale store Bizarre Bazaar, 502 Church St. in Sandpoint. One hundred percent of the store’s proceeds go toward CAL’s annual grant and scholarship programs.

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