Fiestivale a Successful Fundraiser for Tulsa’s Eisenhower International School

Courtesy photo
FUNDRAISING TEAM: Welcoming guests to this year’s Fiestivale were, top row from left, Erin Brown and Co-Chair Marianne Brett-Hedin, and bottom row from left, Co-Chair Marnie Fernandez and Amanda Neely.

Eisenhower International School hosted its 22nd annual Fiestivale fundraiser on Feb. 22. This year’s “Honky Tonk” theme offered guests a mechanical bull, dinner and dancing. The new venue, provided by Barnes Construction Solutions, put a new twist on what has become a must-attend Eisenhower event.
Guests at this year’s event enjoyed a full barbeque spread from Just Catering by Orr, one of Tulsa’s most well-loved caterers. Daniel Jordan returned to perform live music for the evening. Guests had the opportunity to bid on unique live and silent auction items. Returning to the live auction was the beloved Fiestivale tradition – the chance to bid on artwork hand-crafted by each classroom.
Combined with other exciting packages and experiences such as a private flight to a weekend in Bentonville, Arkansas and a private dining experience at Bodean Restaurant & Market, this year’s auction offered prizes for every interest. All proceeds went directly to Eisenhower to fund teacher training and development, classroom libraries, stipends for each teacher and much more.
“In the ever-changing landscape that is public education in the state of Oklahoma, it is more important than ever to raise these crucial funds — our students and teachers deserve to have the consistency that our fundraising efforts provide,” said Fiestivale Co-Chairperson Marnie Fernandez.
This year’s Fiestivale Committee included: Co-Chairs Marnie Fernandez, Marianne Brett, Amanda Neely; Event Planer, Erin Brown; Committee members Andrea Canada, Courtney Coffey, Heath Evans, Natalie Graham, Laci Gregory, Chad McLain, Carla Munozcano, Ashley Ohman, Chelsea Warzecha and Jen White; PTA President, Melanie Branham; and Program Designer, Heather Graves. Presenting sponsors will include Graves McLain, Barnes Construction Solutions and Claremont Corporation.
According to information from Tulsa Public Schools, Eisenhower International School is an Immersion Dual Language School creating responsible, global citizens through language immersion and international exchanges. 
It is one of two language immersion schools in the district, and focuses on creating fluent Spanish or French speaking students. The process of immersing students in another language for classroom learning allows students to naturally learn from the target language. Bilingualism increases brain cognition by utilizing the highest levels of thinking, focus and awareness. Bilingual children who are educated in their second language often outperform single language children in their native language. Teachers in immersion classrooms are either native speakers of the target language or demonstrate near-native proficiency. Since students begin the process in early elementary school, their brains are physiologically primed for language learning and they learn the second language proficiently with a near-native accent. Over time, instruction in English is gradually added and, by fifth grade, students are learning 50 percent of the time in English and 50 percent of the time in the target language. 
During their last year at Eisenhower, select students participate in an exchange program with schools in Spain, Costa Rica and France as part of collaborative work with Tulsa’s Sister Cities organization. 
Eisenhower International School is part the Tulsa Public School System, immersing its students in another language during classroom learning. Its goal is to expose students naturally to a target language, Spanish or French. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit