Crawfish Festival to donate TENs of thousands of $ to kids charity

What: The 13th Annual Village Crawfish Festival When: May 10 6-11pm Where: St Pius X (5500 Woodson) Why: To support a great local charity with some good music, good friends and GREAT food!

Prairie Village, KS - “We are happy to announce the proceeds of this year’s festival are going to a very worthwhile charity, Head Start of Shawnee Mission,” said Brock Exline, one of the founding members of the Secret Order of Crawdaddies. “Our aim is to give back and support local children’s charities who are making a difference in the area…and Head Start of Shawnee Mission definitely fits the bill.”

The Secret Order of Crawdaddies ( is a group of 14 guys from Prairie Village that, more than a decade ago, had the idea of throwing a huge traditional Louisiana Cajun party here in the Midwest, all for the purpose of supporting kids in need.

“We are very excited to partner up with the Crawdaddies for this venture,” adds Terrie VanZandt-Travis, Executive Director of Head Start of Shawnee Mission. “The Crawdaddies are supporting children and families in their community and enriching the County as a whole. Besides that, they throw a great party! The event is relaxed and fun with a community feel to it.”

“We will have more than one-thousand pounds of Crawfish and one-thousand pounds of BBQ for a kick (pork) butt party,” said Exline of Kansas City Veterinary Clinic in Waldo. “The Grand Marquis will be rocking the stage all night as hundreds of crawfish-crazy connoisseurs descend upon St Pius for a great cause.”

This is such an authentic event, that crawfish is flown in from Louisiana for the festival. Brian Short, PNC Real Estate / Midland Loan Services says “several years ago I talked to a few Cajuns from Louisiana that attended our event. They told me they’ve never had better crawfish or barbeque, even back home. That’s when I knew we were doing something special”

It isn’t just the food that is special. Last year, more than $30-thousand dollars was raised for the Gillis Center in Kansas City.

This year’s charity, Head Start of Shawnee Mission, began in 1965 as a summer enrichment program for 17 kids. Now the non-profit serves 203 low-income children and their families by preparing the children socially, nutritionally, psychologically and academically for kindergarten. What sets it apart from other early childhood programs is their comprehensive services and the focus on the family as a whole.

There are five sponsor levels for companies wishing to help the Crawdaddies and Head Start put on the event. Like last year, corporate sponsorships are needed to cover the cost of major fixed expenses not covered by ticket sales. Live crawfish, 4 large tents and other miscellaneous expenses will cost over $9,000. Some great sponsors have already come forward: PNC Real Estate / Midland Loan Services, Abita Beer - Crawford Sales, Kansas City Veterinary Clinic, Rimann Liquors, Kansas City Sea Life Aquarium, PSPR Public Relations, Evolving Magazine, Bledsoe's Rentals, BRGR Kitchen, Eastside & Westside Markets, Grand Marquis, Farm to Market Bread Co., Overland Park Awards, Wagner Industries, KCServers, McGonigle's Market, Blue Scope Steel, Farmland, Nica’s Lagniappe Cajun Kitchen and infoZine® but the Crawdaddies are always looking for more assistance.

Tickets and sponsorship opportunities are available for the bash at

For more information call Robb at 913.908.0028 or email or Steve at or

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