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Nicaragua Night and Auction Slated for January 18

(12/2) Project Gettysburg- León (PGL) will hold its annual Nicaragua Night and Auction on Saturday, January 18 at Gettysburg College's Hauser Field House. Doors open at 5 p.m. A chili dinner will be served. PGL functions under the auspices of Gettysburg College’s Center for Public Service.

The auction is PGL's main fundraiser of the year to support grassroots development projects in in the Department of León, Nicaragua. Auction items include getaway vacations, signature meals, artwork, themed baskets, and a wide variety of services. Last year's event grossed $50,000 and the goal for this year is $55,000, according to auction chair Joyce Ettinger.

PGL began its relationship in 1985 with León, Nicaragua's second largest city, which in 1989 became a sister city of the Borough of Gettysburg. Since then, more than 700 people from Gettysburg and León have visited each other’s communities. PGL has worked with urban and rural communities on dozens of sustainable projects such as health centers, maternity centers, potable water systems, school and house building, rural electrification, and solar ovens and food driers.

In the past year, PGL has worked with the Young Growers Alliance of Adams County to train extension agents in Talolinga. Also, PGL organized a delegation to Nicaragua that included four Gettysburg Area and Upper Adams art teachers working to develop reciprocal art programs in Gettysburg and León. According to PGL spokesman Karl Mattson, the teachers are “hard at work incorporating their experience into the local public school art scene, involving their pupils in all kinds of exchange art, as well as fund-raising for destitute classrooms in Nicaragua.”

This year PGL also provided teacher and material support for a school PGL built last year in Monte Horet, and underwrote staff costs for “Las Tias”, an organization working with at-risk youth and street children. In October, PGL organized its annual “Salsa on the Square,” a Gettysburg celebration of Latino heritage that drew more than 1,200 people.

Tickets can be purchased and tax-deductible auction items donated at the PGL auction website: Tickets are $15 and children under 5 are free. Tables of 10 may be purchased. Those wishing to advertise in the auction booklet, read by approximately 600 auction attendees, can also do that at the same website.

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