Bay Ridge

Bay Ridge luncheon raises funds for Kassenbrock scholarships

March 7, 2016 By Paula Katinas Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Mary Ann Walsh, administrator of the scholarship fund, inspects the gift baskets that guests would be bidding on at the luncheon. Eagle photos by Paula Katinas

Hundreds of people came to the Bay Ridge Manor on Sunday to help raise money to support a scholarship fund for college-bound high school students, and many of the attendees left the catering hall carrying fabulous prizes under their arms.

The officers and trustees of the Kassenbrock Brothers Memorial Scholarship Fund hosted their annual luncheon to raise money for the fund, which has been awarding scholarships ranging from $1,000 to $4,000 to high school students since 1973.

Guests got the chance not only enjoy a delicious lunch, but they were also able to purchase raffle tickets for the opportunity to win gift baskets containing such items as Waterford crystal, Vera Bradley pocketbooks, Godiva chocolate, Coach gloves, children’s art supplies and Lenox candlesticks.

There was also a money tree and several gift certificates offering free meals at local restaurants raffled off.

The Kassenbrock Brothers Memorial Scholarship Fund is named in honor of the late Walter and Vincent Kassenbrock, two civic-minded brothers who founded the Bay Ridge Community Council in 1951. The council is an umbrella organization composed of nearly 100 civic, business and religious groups in the Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights and Fort Hamilton areas of Southwest Brooklyn.

“Bay Ridge is a much better place in which to live because of the Kassenbrock brothers,” the fund’s Administrator Mary Ann Walsh wrote in a message to contributors.

The scholarship fund operates separately from the community council and is technically not part of the council. But individual councilmembers have regularly supported the fund.

The scholarships are awarded to high school students with strong academic records who have also, in the spirit of the Kassenbrock brothers, demonstrated strong records of community service.

Scholarship winners must demonstrate to the selection committee that they have completed community service projects such as park cleanups, helping the homeless and paying regular visits to senior citizen centers.

Sixteen scholarships were awarded in 2015. The winners were Athena Sofides (Fontbonne Hall Academy), Nicholas Koven (Fort Hamilton High School), Andrew Lee (Fort Hamilton), Diana Avetisyan (Fort Hamilton), Daniel Petric (Xaverian High School), Laura Daly (Fontbonne Hall), Nicole Ling (Fort Hamilton), Martha Marin (Fort Hamilton), Mickey Chan (Fort Hamilton), Christopher Penello (Xavier High School), Jill Nixon (Fontbonne Hall), Christina Frantangelo (Fontbonne Hall), Anokhi Sachdev (Fontbonne Hall), Christine Allawh (Fort Hamilton), Janal Beyrouti (Fontbonne Hall) and Albert Connolly (Xaverian).