Nearly 200 dinners were sold at the Colusa Police Department Canine Association’s tri-tip dinner and fundraiser last Thursday – not a bad start for a first year event.
“We sold close to 180 plates, and I thought that was pretty good,” Carolee Ornbuan, who owns Rocco’s on the River and hosted the fundraising event. “Next year, we will know how to change it up and get better. I think we need to really push the fact that there’s takeout – we had people who didn’t come because it was so packed.”
That was a good problem to have for the Colusa Police Department Canine Association, which was looking to raise enough money to outfit a vehicle and purchase a bulletproof vest for the department’s dog, along with paying for training. While the official totals from the fundraiser have yet to be tallied – including the proceeds from the dinner, a raffle and silent auction, and sales of apparel and decals – it looks like the group will be able to cover those expenses.
“I spoke with (K9 officer) Benny (Beecham) after the dinner, and he felt that they had raised enough to outfit his rig, do six months of training, and get the dog a vest,” Ornbaun said. “It sounds like it was pretty successful for them. I think this community wrapped itself around another good cause once again.”
Counted among the take-out customers was Tina Beckley, who came out to the dinner simply to help the community.
“I feel that having a K9 officer is a great asset for this community, and I’m a firm believer in doing whatever I can to help support it. I think that it’s a good program, and I think it’s something we need to have here,” Beckley said. “I thought it was great of Carolee and Don to support an event like this. They are two people who really believe in supporting their community and programs like this.”
More than anything, Ornbaun said that it was her love of animals – dogs in particular, and especially the breeds typically used in police work – that made her eager to support the fundraiser for Colusa Police Department’s Canine Association.
“We love animals, obviously – we named our restaurant after our own dog,” Ornbaun said.
As a result of the dinner and fundraiser, it looks like K9 Rocky will continue to be well taken care of. ■