Around 1,000 people celebrated the life of Philando Castile on Sunday at a fundraising event to establish a scholarship in his name for Central High School students.
"Overall it was a fun event with a diverse crowd there to celebrate his life," event organizer Adrian Perryman told BringMeTheNews on Sunday.
The celebration included a lineup of live music, food, crafts, raffles and family fun for six hours at the Dunwoody Rec Center near Central High School, where Castile graduated from in 2001.
Performances included the artists Heiruspecs and Metasota. The raffle was organized by the "mom squad" – a group of parents who asked for donations to raise money for the scholarship, explained Perryman.
Gift baskets included Beats headphones, Central High T-shirts, a Stone Brewing gift basket and many contributions from local restaurants reported the Pioneer Press.
There were also several community groups in attendance signing up people for other causes, said Perryman.
Perryman, like the other event organizers, knew Castile personally. He graduated from Central High a few classes behind him.
Organizers originally hoped to raise about $3,000, but by Friday they had raised $15,000 in online donations for the scholarship. Today's event put the total well over $25,000 said Perryman.
Now, the next step is deciding if the scholarship should be given out to one student annually, or if there should be multiple scholarships given out to students in his name. Regardless, there will be a scholarship available in Castile's name for the class of 2017, said Perryman.
Another event organizer and friend of Castile, Karla Basta, previously told BringMeTheNews that the scholarship is a way to “kind of push back against the negative trolls and the people that say horrible things during these cases, and to really bring that positivity and love, and to create a legacy for him that kind of continues what he was doing.”
Castile had worked with St. Paul Public Schools since 2002, and had most recently been with J.J. Hill Montessori as a nutrition supervisor in the cafeteria.
To reflect that, organizers want the scholarship to be open to Central High School students who are part of underrepresented populations, and who are pursuing a college degree in education or childhood development.
"He was a good person and didn't deserve to die the way he died. So anything that we can do to honor the good memory that he left behind, I think it's important," Central High School Principal Mary Mackbee told Newsy. "And the scholarship is a great way to do that because it will go on forever,"
Here are some moments from the day's events:
Art and raffle:
According to Basta's post, Castile's family took home the post pictured above.