PRESS RELEASE / ANNOUNCEMENTS Tuesday, September 9, 2014

The Royal Gala

The Royal Pride Foundation is excited to host the inaugural Royal Gala to benefit San Marcos High School on Friday evening, September, 26, 2014 at the Fess Parker Doubletree Resort, 633 East Cabrillo Blvd.

“I am very excited about the Inaugural Royal Gala,” said Ed Behrens, Principal at San Marcos High School. “There have been so many exciting changes and improvements to San Marcos over the past few years, and this is the perfect way to celebrate those accomplishments.”

The Royal Pride Foundation provides strategic guidance and funding for projects that support all students and drive San Marcos High School to excellence in academics, extracurricular pursuit and facilities. Over the last two years, the Foundation has raised over $600,000 and accomplished many amazing goals, namely funding the Health Academy, Entrepreneurship Academy, Café Royale Culinary Program, school-wide landscaping and infrastructure improvements and the purchase of a new athletic van. The Royal Gala will be a celebration of that success and a way for the community to improve San Marcos.

“Looking to private fundraising isn’t something that most of us associate with public schools,” says Outgoing Founding Chair of the Royal Pride Foundation and current Board member, Katina Etsell. “But the reality is that funds are limited. We, at San Marcos High School, don’t want to be limited by that. An amazing group of co-chairs, under the Royal Proud Foundation, have found a meaningful way to raise funds for the many projects we have designated for the upcoming school year and for years to come. Welcome to our ROYAL GALA!”

The Royal Gala will take place from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Fess Parker Doubetree, and the event is open to the public. Tickets are $125 per person and can be purchased online at The formal evening, hosted by CJ Ward and Beth Farnsworth of KEYT, will feature exciting live auction items, an amazing array of silent auction items, a three-course plated dinner, and entertainment by the local favorite Area 51.

In addition, The Royal Gala will honor the following community members and organization that have supported San Marcos High School since its establishment in 1958. Ron Werft, President/CEO of Cottage Health System will receive the Community Leadership Award; Rich Ridgway, Principal of Investec will be presented with the Citizenship Award; and the Orfalea Foundation will be granted the Philanthropy Award.

We are all very excited about the upcoming Royal Gala, which will benefit all students at San Marcos High School through the Royal Pride Foundation,” said Eric Voulgaris, present Chair of the Royal Pride Foundation Board. “The honorees this year have done such incredible work in our community, and it will be a fantastic opportunity to recognize them.”

Community and corporate sponsors, headlined by Cottage Health Systems, have donated over $33,000 to make The Royal Gala possible. More information about sponsorships at

San Marcos High School
Established in 1958, San Marcos High School employs approximately 91 teachers, 7 counselors, and 5 administrators. It is accredited through the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and was named a California Distinguished School in 1994 and 2005. The school’s varied curriculum offers over 200 academic and elective courses. Approximately 80% of San Marcos students go on to higher education. San Marcos moved from a traditional six-period day to a block schedule where students take three 90-minute classes a day with the option of a fourth class, allowing students to complete 16 classes a year instead of the traditional 12. San Marcos High School is located in a primarily suburban area eight miles north of the city of Santa Barbara, California, with a greater metropolitan population of 200,000.

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