The king and queen hopefuls are raising money throughout the month of February, with the royalty being crowned at the Mardis Gras Ball put on by the Haywood Schools Foundation on Saturday, March 2, at Laurel Ridge Country Club. The king and queen candidates who raise the most money get the title.
“It’s been fun to get out in the community and raise money for such an important cause — supporting public education and the great teachers of Haywood County — with a little friendly competition along the way,” said Greg Boothroyd, who is running for the title of king and has two children of his own in Haywood County schools.
Boothroyd is co-owner of The Smoky Mountain News and Haywood County Chamber of Commerce board member. Other candidates for king include: Scotty Setser with the MedWest Fitness Center and Michael Sorrells, a county commissioner and convenience store owner in Jonathan Creek. Queen candidates include Ellene Francis and Beth Brown, owner of Beth Brown Photography.
Boothroyd has scheduled special fundraising events as part of his bid for Mardi Gras King:
• Wine tasting and food pairings at the Classic Wineseller at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 21. Taste five wines with food pairings and get special discounts on wine purchases. $50/person. Reservations 828.452.6000.
• Buy a slice or whole “King Cake” from City Bakery through March 2.
Boothroyd and Queen candidate Beth Brown are partnering on two events:
• Music and beer at BearWaters Brewery (formally Headwaters Brewery) from 5 to 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 23. Live music by Hermit Kings of Asheville.
• Cash mob from 4 p.m. until early evening on Wednesday, Feb. 27. Drop money in their “hat” at the corner of Walnut and Main streets and get some Mardis Gras Beads.
The money raised through the Maris Gras ball and King and Queen competition goes toward mini grants for teachers to buy supplies, attend training and workshops, teacher recruitment and retention, and scholarships.