POTTSBORO — Not every bill is settled yet; not every silent auction item paid for, but ten days after the 2013 Boot Scootin’ Ball, which drew more than 1,000 people to raise funds for Preston Volunteer Emergency Services, organizers said they were beginning to get an idea of the financial impact of the Oct. 19 event. When all is said and done, fundraising staff say they believe the Ball will net more than $180,000 — much-needed money that will help provide emergency service to Pottsboro and the Preston Peninsula.

POTTSBORO — Not every bill is settled yet; not every silent auction item paid for, but ten days after the 2013 Boot Scootin’ Ball, which drew more than 1,000 people to raise funds for Preston Volunteer Emergency Services, organizers said they were beginning to get an idea of the financial impact of the Oct. 19 event. When all is said and done, fundraising staff say they believe the Ball will net more than $180,000 — much-needed money that will help provide emergency service to Pottsboro and the Preston Peninsula.


"The 2013 Boot Scootin’ Ball may prove to be the best in the 13-year history of the fundraiser," said Betty Roether, one of the event’s organizers. "(The funds will) assist with purchase of equipment, help with funding a new building and the future establishment of an endowment fund to ensure continuation of PVES’ services."


Fellow organizer Nancy Anderson, who serves on the PVES Foundation’s Board, said the Ball is vital to keeping the area’s emergency services financially viable.


"We don’t have the huge tax base to pay for this stuff like Sherman or Denison," she explained. "We could see this need and that’s why we formed this foundation. We’re able to do things with training and equipment now that we just couldn’t do before."


Anderson said that the capital generated by last year’s Ball was used in conjunction with a state grant to purchase a $140,000 ambulance, as well as pay for several trainings. Preston Firefighter Eric Major said that one of those trainings was held recently.


"We’ve been able to go to different trainings, like a couple weeks ago, four of us were able to go to Grayson College for an extrication class," he said. Referring to the construction of a new facility — the cost of which will be partially covered by the Boot Scootin’ Ball — Major said, "The new building will give us easier access (to Highway 289), decrease response times and give us more room for the vehicles."


The Ball was held once again this year at a donated facility, the Bar-K-R Ranch northwest of Pottsboro. According to Anderson, the $180,000 payday for the Foundation would not have been possible if not for the behind-the-scenes work of many.


"We have salaries to pay, with 24/7 staffing on the paramedics, and equipment to buy and maintain. But we just have a great group of community volunteers. It’s just huge what these people do to make it all possible."