(From the Idaho Press Tribune)
Posted on Sunday, January 19, 2014 12:05 am, by Kelsey Nuttall
CALDWELL — Members of the Basque community hosted the annual Basque Auction, Dinner and Dance Saturday to raise money for a great cause.
“This is our fundraiser for the Euzkaldunak charities group,” Tim Quintana, a volunteer at the event, said. “We give (away) all the money we make tonight.”
In the past 46 years, the group has raised more than $2 million to give back to families in need.
“It’s typically an individual family,” Quintana said. “Say someone is having a child with a medical issue and is needing some help; those are the people we try to help.”
The group learns about the families through references in the community and a committee of four ensures the family needs the donation.
“As far as how many families we will help in individual donations, we usually help somewhere in the neighborhood of 20 to 25 families a year,” Quintana said.
The Idaho Basque community is the largest concentrated group of Basques in the world outside of Spain.
“A lot of Basque immigrants originally came here, a lot of them herded sheep,” Quintana said. “… When you have a family member here, they bring other family members here, so a Basque culture kind of developed here.”
The event, hosted by volunteers, includes Basque food, an auction and dancing.
“You’ve got the Oinkaris and a couple of kids dance for us,” Quintana said. “It’s an opportunity for everyone to see those traditional dances.”
Quintana said they will serve about 600 meals and anticipated an after-dinner crowd of 1,500 to 2,000.
“I just think it’s a lot of fun,” Quintana said. “(It’s) a great event that’s been around for a long time, a great tradition for the community.”
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