An ancient invention that was used for spying, rescuing and military communications eventually evolved into a popular toy—the kite. Now that toy is proving it's more that just for fun at an event that allows families to play together while raising money for a good cause.
Unlike kites, which have been around since the Han Dynasty, Kite Fest in Bloomington-Normal has only been around for a handful of years. But in that short time, the organizers have used the event to help nonprofit organizations both here in the Twin Cities and around the world.
"The money raised with this Kite Fest will go locally to the Community Health Care Clinic and Mid-Central Community Action," said Tejas Jani, a member of For a Better Tomorrow, the philanthropic organization behind Kite Fest. "We chose nonprofit organizations whose goals align with those of For A Better Tomorrow. What these non-profits do resonate with us."
A portion of the proceeds also go to global charities, like Friends of the Children of Haiti.
"And the nonprofits are different every year of Kite Fest," explained Stephanie Duquenne from For A Better Tomorrow. "So eventually everybody will get to benefit."
This is the fourth year for Kite Fest, which took place in June in Hancock Stadium. To attract more people, Duquenne said they kept the admission free and raised revenue by selling kites and having sponsorships. "That way we can allow anybody that's walking by to come in and check it out, and hopefully buy a kite and donate and learn more about For A Better Tomorrow."
Holding a kite festival as a fundraiser helps For A Better Tomorrow make this event standout from the crowd of fundraisers.
"We really want to make this a unique experience for everyone," explained Tejas Jani. "You have your luncheons, your galas, your what-have-you. I think those are very common. But kite flying, and being out on a nice summer day—it's just so unique! And it presents a chance for our community to come together and help out these nonprofits. The way the state has been doing, the nonprofits have to be creative about finding ways to generate that revenue."
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