A special fundraising dinner for the Mabel Community Market was held on Saturday evening, Nov. 16, at the Mabel Legion. Several hosts decorated tables with a specific theme and invited others to join them for dinner. Enjoying their “simple elegance” table were, from left, Barb Eiken, Betty Scrabeck, Anne Marie Scrabeck, Anna Erickson, Georgia Hermanson and Darcy Erickson. The table was adorned with a lace tablecloth and depression dinnerware.
A special fundraising dinner for the Mabel Community Market was held on Saturday evening, Nov. 16, at the Mabel Legion. Several hosts decorated tables with a specific theme and invited others to join them for dinner. Enjoying their “simple elegance” table were, from left, Barb Eiken, Betty Scrabeck, Anne Marie Scrabeck, Anna Erickson, Georgia Hermanson and Darcy Erickson. The table was adorned with a lace tablecloth and depression dinnerware.
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"It was the people who got on board and decorated the tables who made the event," explained Laura St. Mary about the fundraising dinner held for the Mabel Community Market on Saturday, Nov. 16.

A total of 13 tables were decorated with various themes throughout the dining room of the Mabel Legion. A delicious meal of beef tips and chicken, prepared by Patty Vatland, rewarded those who accepted the decorating challenge and those who purchased tickets to the dinner.

"Without the participants and Patty's great cooking, there would not have been an event," St. Mary reiterated. "The event really hinged on them - the hosts of the table and them getting their people there."

A total of $2,052 was raised for the development of the community market. That amount was possible due to several donations to help defray the costs of holding the event, including a donation from Marso Electric to help cover food costs and from Canton Heating and Plumbing to pay for the disc jockey.

Volunteers in the kitchen prepared the food, working alongside of Vatland, were Deb Buxengard and Linda Olson. Helping St. Mary serve the meal were Shelly Gerard and Nancy Gjere.

The tables featured several themes, from a Duck Dynasty inspired table to another featuring "simple elegance." Car parts adorned one table while depression-era glassware topped another. A Hawaiian table brought feelings of tropical warmth to fight off the cooler temperatures while a brightly-colored red-hat table brought some cheer to the mix. Family china collections adorned several tables and candles, camping lanterns and string lights provided illumination throughout the room.

"The variety was great," said St. Mary. "And I was really pleased by the age range of those who participated."

She said there were "young'uns" there as well as older people, representing multiple generations, all of which were reflected in the different table themes.

St. Mary explained that the idea for the fundraiser came from a woman who visited Evangeline's in Mabel while St. Mary was working one day. She was looking for handkerchiefs to use in decorating a table at a fundraiser for the Owatonna hospital. St. Mary recalled her own mother being invited to participate in a similar event in Decorah and decided to talk to her friend and co-organizer Vatland about it. Both agreed that it would not only be a good opportunity to raise money for the proposed market, but could also serve as an enjoyable evening out and a pre-holiday party for the community.

Their suppositions were correct as not only did the fundraising event raise over $2,000, those who attended were very complimentary. Because of several requests to do another dinner in the near future, St. Mary said they are looking at hosting a similar event in the spring, after the busyness of the holidays subsides and before the farmers get busy in the fields.