Grapefruit Sale

Grapefruit Crew at Hodgen Distributing Dec 2017

The 2017 Fundraising Event was another huge success, even with Hurricane Harvey causing problems for our supplier earlier in the year and with last minute delivery problems from the vendor in Texas to Pendleton and other northwest drop-offs.  With the delivery delayed until Sunday, the word went out to all the customers that the pick-up event would be on Tuesday, December 5th, from 2:00-6:00pm. Our Branch members showed up enforce on Monday afternoon to sort over 700 boxes and cull out any bad fruit.  Once again, we found just one box of ‘bad’ grapefruit out of the entire order.  Due to another glitch with the shipment process, the vendor gave us 50 extra boxes, above our order number.  We were able to sell these extra boxes and add those dollars to the total amount raised.  Overall, most of the customers were very nice about the delay and were just thrilled to once again get the wonderful product.   By the end of the event, we sold 714 boxes this year.  The final profit made is posted in the Member’s Only page.

This was the second year having the pickup event at Hodgen Distributing on Westgate, and they were especially accommodating to us considering the late delivery and having to work out of their facility one a weekday.  We sincerely appreciate working with this great local company and letting us take over their space for a few days.

This is the only fundraiser event for the Branch. Please help us continue our support for local scholarships and STEM programs.


Photos from December 2015 pickup event

Check In Table

Check In Table

2015 Customer Support (Box Haulers)

2015 Customer Support (Box Haulers)

Cooper Stratton getting a lift from Paul Davis after a long day of loading boxes

Cooper getting a lift from Paul after helping a customer with their boxes










To get your name onto the customer list for the 2016 sale, contact any Branch member or call the Project Chair, Kathy Ward, at 541-276-0308.

The annual fundraiser event is finished for another year. Sales were about the same as last year: 644 boxes in 2015 compared to 639 boxes in 2014. For the 2013 fundraiser, the Branch sold 697 boxes which was just slightly fewer than the 715 boxes sold in 2012. Costs for each box continue to increase which impacts profit totals for the Branch. On average, the yearly profit is around $4,000.

The sale of the Rio Star Texas Sweet Grapefruit first started in the Pendleton area by AFS (American field Service) exchange program around 1983. This was a common way for those AFS chapters to make money to send their students overseas and to help bring students to the US.  The AFS representative recommended it to the Pendleton area families and got them started – 50 boxes that first year.  According to AFS member Julianne Sawyer, “it got to the point that we had more money than we needed and were not sending students. Also, there were just three of us running the chapter and selling fruit.”

The project involved just three ladies selling and organizing the sale and enlisting their husbands when the fruit was delivered. When one lady moved out of the area, the others decided it was time to make a change. Several area groups were interested in it as a fundraiser but since both ladies were also AAUW members, they offered the grapefruit sales to the Pendleton AAUW branch. And the rest is AAUW history.  Julianne think that was in the mid-1990’s but the records aren’t clear.

Over the last few years, the Pendleton branch has used the grapefruit sale as their only fundraising event of the year. Members start taking orders and collecting money in mid-October. Boxes of grapefruit are delivered off the PGG loading dock, usually on the first Saturday of December. It’s become an unofficial holiday season event for members and customers alike.

Dec. 2014 Grapefruit Crew at PGG

Grapefruit Crew at PGG Dec. 2014