ASTORIA - Sea Resources Watershed Learning Center will host its first annual fund-raiser Thursday, Oct. 24 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Duncan Law Seafood Consumer Center in Astoria. Sea Resources, a nonprofit organization based in Chinook, conducts science research, restoration, and education in the Lower Columbia region.

All funds raised from this event will be earmarked for the education program. Last school year, Sea Resources' hands-on science program served over 1,000 students in grades kindergarten through 12, primarily from Astoria and Ocean Beach school districts.

Last spring, Sea Resources received a $50,000 grant from the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust to continue the development of its education program and purchase needed supplies. However, the grant didn't come without strings attached. Sea Resources received $29,800 outright for this year, but receipt of the remaining $20,200 is contingent upon the organization's ability to raise an equal amount from other sources.

"We are accessing other foundations and programs to meet this challenge, but hope to raise a significant portion from the communities that benefit from our educational services," says Robert Warren, Sea Resources executive director.

Sponsors for the Oct. 24 event include State Representative Betsy Johnson, Shorebank Enterprise Pacific, Linda and Bill Dygert, The Daily Astorian, and The Chinook Observer.

The evening's events include dinner, guest speakers, a silent auction, and Sea Resources memberships for all attendees. The organization asks for a minimum donation of $45.

Guest speakers include Arthur Dye and Charley Dewberry. Dye is a Portland-based leader in community development and conservation who played an instrumental role in the development of Sea Resource's restoration program. Dewberry is a restoration ecologist with Ecotrust who developed a plan to restore the Chinook River watershed. Sea Resources staff members will also present information on the organization's current education programs.

For more information of RSVP for the event, please contact Sea Resources at 777-8229.

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