Valley Elementary Educational Foundation  
Raising money to enrich the educational experience so every child at Valley can succeed


Valley Elementary MonumentValley Elementary, home of the Tigers, is one of the three original schools in the Poway Unified School District. Originally built in 1962, it has a rich history as a vital part of our community.

The Foundation was established in 2006 by three parents who had a vision of how to make a difference at Valley. The founders — Mikkel Christensen, Stephen Fazen and Meri Lopez — recognized that school budgets were shrinking while class sizes were growing. Teachers were being asked to do more with less, students were struggling and programs were in jeopardy.

They envisioned an organization made of up parents who, together, could harness their time, their talents and their treasure to raise money, to plan events, to form partnerships and to help supplement what was being lost. But even they could not have predicted the scope of what would be accomplished by the Foundation with the help of the focused and collective efforts of our donors, sponsors, teachers, parents, volunteers and friends.

wine in the valley logoWine in the Valley – The Fall Gala and Auction

The Foundation held a Wine in the Valley auction and gala in 2009 and 2010 that raised a combined $77,800. In 2010, after the silent auction and live auction components were over, participants were invited to “Stand Up for Valley.” We held our breath when the auctioneer asked people to simply stand up and pledge a direct donation, at whatever level they could, to help buy computers for our school. Teachers stood up. Administrators stood up. Staff members stood up. Parents stood up. People who didn’t even have children at Valley stood up. In all, 49 families stood up together to raise more than $8,000 during that portion of the evening alone — with pledges ranging from $25 to $800 apiece.

Wine in the Valley Participants at the 2010 Wine in the Valley event

Cinco de Mayo Trail Run

First Trail RunRunners begin the 5K race at the inaugural Cinco de Mayo Trail Run

The generosity of the Valley family and the local community has never ceased to amaze us. But nowhere is it more evident than at the Cinco de Mayo Trail Run, which has become the Foundation’s signature fundraiser. At the inaugural event, in 2007, there were 330 runners and we raised $12,000. The year 2013 was our breakthrough year. For the first time ever we broke — actually smashed through the 1,000 participant barrier. Our final registration total was 1,223 and the event made $25,000 for Valley Elementary! Since its inception, the popular event has raised an astounding $238,053.

Our 10th Annual Cinco de Mayo Trail Run will be held on May 7, 2016, at Lake Poway. It promises to be bigger and better than ever before and we hope you’ll join us for this major milestone in the event’s history!

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