Figures are not yet totaled by organizers are already aware that this year's Taste of India set an attendance record and will set a financial one as well.
This is the fifth year for the themed night conjuring up the spirit of India to benefit the Yellowhead Rotary Club. When this year's funds are accounted for, said co-organizer Sonica Kandola (who arranges the annual event with Kim Gill), the overall amount will surpass $250,000.
"We had 680 people this year, that is the most we've ever had and I don't see how we can fit any more in that space. We sold out in 21 days, we added tables, and we could have added more tables if we had the space," Kandola said.
This year, like past years, featured an Indo-Canadian dinner, Indian dancing, henna body art, and the popular dance music of live band Delhi 2 Dublin.
"People want to see them, they have their own following, which really helps our event," said Kandola.
It has become one of the most popular events on the Prince George social calendar but Kandola said the real purpose is to raise as much money as possible for local and global charities supported by the Rotary club.
So far, she said, the money raised by Taste Of India has outfitted two schools in India, supported the local school district with meal programs, provided financial support to the Kordyban Cancer Lodge, and provided more than 46,000 polio vaccinations in developing communities. Part of the funds from this year's event will support a clubhouse envisioned by Big Brothers / Big Sisters in Prince George to give "bigs" a place to bring their "littles" for recreation and fellowship with other big-little pairs.
"Our event is to utilize those resources to help those who can really use it and make communities - local and global - a better place," he said. "It's great to hear that our event is such a lot of fun for the community and raises funds without making people feel obligated or pressured. We want people to enjoy the way they are contributing to the well-being of people in places that really need it, including our own."
There is not going to be a Taste Of India next year, however.
Although it is an annual event, it is always held in the middle of February, and that would put it in the middle of the 2015 Canada Winter Games. The Yellowhead club opted to hold off a year in deference to that event.
"We don't want to pull away at all from what the Games are doing," Kandola said. "The community will be better off by far by having the Games go well, and we will come back stronger in 2016. We are very fine with taking that year off. Taste Of India and the community will benefit in the long run."
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