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Brandenburg Crab Feed
Strong turnout for fundraiser

More than 400 tickets were sold for the Jordan and Chase Brandenburg Memorial Scholarship Fund crab feed in the Winthrop Barn Saturday evening (October 8).

In a show of support for the Jordan and Chase Brandenburg Memorial Scholarship Fund, a large crowd showed up last Saturday for a crab feast at the Winthrop Barn.

More than 400 tickets were sold for the event, now in its fourth year, and it was expected to raise around $19,000, judging on past performance, according to Darold Brandenburg, the boys’ father and owner of Brandenburg Construction in Twisp.

Rick Swanson of Winthrop, left, and Gordon Stuart of Vancouver, B.C., dig in.

Nearly $6,000 was spent on 525 crabs, which came from Taylor Shellfish on Chuckanut Drive near Bellingham, said Brandenburg, who added that an unusually short crab season drove the price up this year. The crabs were cooked by a group of volunteers who started at 6 a.m. and had the job done by 11 a.m., he said.

The Brandenburg family’s goal is to build the foundation for a permanent scholarship fund and to give three Liberty Bell High School graduating seniors $1,000 scholarships next spring, Brandenburg said. The applicants will be judged on the quality of the letter they submit and the strength of their stated plan for the future, he explained. The fund is registered as a 501 (c) (3) non-profit corporation.

“It’s a hard event for us,” Brandenburg confessed. But, he added, gesturing toward the enthusiastic crowd digging into the crabs, “Look at it. It’s fantastic. People come to us and want to donate” items for auction, he said. Among the many offerings was a Sun Mountain package, rooms at the Rio Vista, a fancy camping stove and a model airplane. “People plan their vacations to be here for the feed,” he added.

Tables were filled with crab and conversation.

Brandenburg’s wife, Sheila, manager of Jamie’s Place, an assisted living facility in Winthrop, served as master of ceremonies. “It’s been a tough six years,” she told the audience.

Jordan Brandenburg died in 2005 in a single-car accident near Coos Bay, Oregon, where he was a freshman in college. His little brother, Chase, died in 2007 as the result of a truck accident; he was six.

posted 10/10/2011