Grand prize house is valued at nearly $300,000
By Alisha McDarris
TREASURE COAST -- The YMCA of the Treasure Coast is kicking off its biggest fundraiser of the year: The annual Easter House raffle.
This is the 27th year the YMCA has raffled off a house in the area, providing one lucky family with a brand new abode or $150,000 and thousands of others with YMCA scholarships.
Every $10 raffle ticket goes toward providing Treasure Coast children and families with scholarship dollars that they can use toward the 87 programs like gymnastics and tae kwon do or senior pilates and tai chi that the YMCA offers.
"We don't ever want to turn anyone away for an inability to pay," said Robin Sutherland, Easter House project director. "Every year we provide thousands of scholarships with the money we raise."
That's what the Easter House raffle is truly all about.
"It's not just about the house," Ms. Sutherland said. "First and foremost we're supporting the children and families of the Treasure Coast."
That's what she has loved about her job for the many years she's been giving away Easter Houses for the YMCA.
"I feel very privileged. I've changed 16 people's lives, but we've touched tens of thousands of children and families on the Treasure Coast."
Last year, more than 60,000 raffle tickets were sold, raising more than $250,000. This year the goal is to sell 62,000 tickets for the house that is valued at around $50,000 more than last year's.
The house is 2,700 square feet with four bedrooms, two bathrooms and a two-car garage. It is located in the Highlands Reserve Community in Palm City and is valued at $294,990.
"It's a beautiful home in a great neighborhood," Ms. Sutherland said.
The model house is on display and open for touring, but the actual house to be awarded to one lucky individual will be built after the drawing so the winner can select details like the color of the tile, cabinets and countertops.
Of course, if the winner is happy with the home they already have, they can opt for the $150,000 cash prize instead. There's also a second prize this year that can only be won by purchasing three Easter House tickets at the same time. It is a 2014 Harley Davidson Dyna Switchback donated by Treasure Coast Harley Davidson and valued at $16,000.
Raffle Tickets can be purchased by calling 877-WIN-YMCA (877-946-9622) or online at YMCAeasterhouse.org.
The house is open for tours seven days a week from 10:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. and is located at 1753 S.W. Swallowtail Way in Palm City. Anyone hoping to win a beautiful new home, a bunch of cash or a shiny new motorcycle has until April 17, the day of the drawing, to purchase tickets.
Sutherland is also looking for volunteers to man the house and sell tickets. Interested parties can call her directly at (772) 260-7878.