The Turkey Shoot is a night of raffles. People purchase raffle tickets at the door, and numbers are called as the evening progresses.
At this year’s event, set for Friday, Nov. 22, they’ll have 10 rounds of raffles, each with roughly 20 items, from gift baskets and a Cape Cod getaway to YMCA memberships and passes for Walt Disney World. All the raffle items are donated by Witchcraft Heights School families and businesses throughout the community.
Three turkeys, a turkey platter and a basket with all the fixings for a holiday dinner will be raffled off with every round. Each of the 10 rounds finishes with the pièce de résistance, a snowman yard sign.
This year, they’ll have a separate table of raffles to raise money for the Pszenny children. Each of Salem’s public schools has donated a gift basket for the Pszenny family raffle table, Panneton said.
Witchcraft Heights School has also organized a 50/50 raffle to benefit the family. They’re selling 200 tickets at $100 each. The raffle winner will receive $10,000 and the Pszenny children will receive $10,000, said Panneton. They’ve sold all but 20 of the 50/50 raffle tickets, Panneton said, and the winning ticket will be drawn at the Turkey Shoot.
The Turkey Shoot is the PTO’s largest fundraiser of the year and it usually draws about 300 people.
People even line up outside the building before the doors open, Panneton said.
“It’s a lot of fun. There are people who have been coming for 20 or 30 years,” she said. “Some people come just because they love it (and don’t have children at the school). ... It’s really a community event.”
Organizing the event and collecting all the raffle donations is a lot of work, but it’s a labor of love — and something Cheryl always felt was worth it, said Panneton.