The Shipley Shops was Shipley’s signature fall fundraising event since 1960. Over the years, we have been extremely fortunate to have had hundreds of dedicated volunteers and committed staff leading efforts that resulted in generous support for our school.
In the several years leading up to COVID, the School began to observe a shift in the Shipley community’s participation in the event, as measured by attendance and net revenue. When the pandemic struck and completely forced the cancellation or postponement of so many gatherings, we did as most other schools and took the opportunity to evaluate all our events – not only the dollars and cents, but also how and why we gather.
With Shipley Shops, the numbers told us that the community’s response was not aligned with the amount of time and energy invested in producing the event. Ever-busier schedules had begun to impact the number of parent/guardian volunteers able to serve. Efforts to attract shoppers to Yarnall Gym were challenged due to the rise of online retail. We also struggled to ensure accessible price points. These factors led to the decision to end the event in its most recent form.
Shipley Shops was an annual highlight for many. The memories and bonds made by everyone involved in making it as successful as it was for such a long time remain a cherished part of those who participated in Shops. We also recognize the number of parents, guardians, colleagues, alumni, friends, and businesses who generously contributed in both tangible and intangible ways, and the School will always be grateful to them for what they did for Shipley over the years.
As we look toward the future, we are exploring new ways to best continue to advance Shipley’s mission through community engagement. You can learn more about ways to support and engage with Shipley on our volunteer page