Hundreds gather for in-person Rome Sweet Home events

Published: Sep. 25, 2021 at 10:23 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Organizers said it was executed last year but there’s nothing like being back in person for the “Rome Sweet Home” Festival at the Christ the King Church.

Co-Chairs Kyle and Heather Grunert say it’s their largest fundraising event.

Kyle said, “I think of no better or sweeter home than Rome so obviously that’s the home place of our religion. So it’s exciting to celebrate Rome and the heritage there.”

Hundreds enjoyed the fall evening at the christ the king church for the 7th annual Rome Sweet Home festivities.

The morning started with a 5k run and walk before the evening events.

Heather said, “We started with an outdoor rosary and mass and then we followed with kids games, activities, bouncy houses, an Italian dinner served by LaRocca’s and then we’re having now “Chance Encounter,” a live band, for the rest of the evening and a beer and wine tent all evening.”

They had raffle prizes, sweepstakes with a chance to win $10,000, and an online auction to raise the funds. But they want to do it in a fun way with all the things going on.

“It’s really all about that but, the fundraising efforts as well are much appreciated,” said Kyle. “Because it is a huge part in supporting our school, our church, our early education center that services so many here in the city of Topeka.”

Last year’s events were virtual because of the pandemic. The Grunert’s said it was great they were able to do it, but it’s just not the same as being in-person.

Father Matthew Schiffelbein said he felt blessed bringing people together is what it’s all about. Raising money to help out their services is always appreciated.

“For me, an event like this is always about the fun and the fellowship and we get some prayer in there and we draw some people in the community that may or may not actually come otherwise without an event like this,” he said.

They had fireworks out in the grassy area at around 8:30 Saturday night. Following that, Father Schiffelbein got up on stage with the band and played his saxophone to end the night.

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