MADISON – Strike up the band and get ready to paint the town red.
BJ’s Wholesale club celebrated its Alabama debut with a surprise for Madison teachers and students.
The BJ’s Charitable Foundation is making a $15,000 donation for newly expanded music and arts programs at all seven Madison City elementary schools.
“We are thrilled to welcome BJ’s Wholesale Club into our community and are beyond grateful for the positive impact they have already made on our elementary schools,” said Dr. Ed Nichols, Madison City Schools Superintendent. “This generous donation will help enhance the lives of thousands of students annually in Madison.”
The event was at Midtown Elementary, led by kindergarteners singing “The Farmer In The Dell” and “Old McDonald Had A Farm.”
Music and art teachers from the other elementary schools attended the surprise grant presentation under the guise of an important faculty meeting.
The gift is timely as MCS recently grew its elementary arts and music teacher ranks. Previously, teachers were shared among schools. Now each school has its own.
The money will help teachers increase the musical instruments, arts and learning supplies in classrooms.
“You can’t underestimate the value of fine arts on learning,” Nichols said. “Studies show students perform better and it helps improve those pathways for creativity and for them to express themselves.”
In collaboration with DonorsChoose, BJ’s Charitable Foundation has funded more than 700 classroom projects in nearly 600 schools, supporting some 675 teachers nationally. To date, BJ’s has already funded 29 classroom projects in 13 North Alabama schools.
“BJ’s Wholesale Club is committed to supporting the local communities where we live and work,” said Kirk Saville, BJ’s head of Corporate Communications. “We’re proud to provide teachers with the classroom materials they need to help students thrive.”
BJ’s Charitable Foundation provides essential needs to families in communities within BJ’s Wholesale Club’s footprint.
In Madison, BJ’s is also partnering with the Food Bank of North Alabama to donate nutritious, fresh food to help local families in need.
Alabama’s first BJ’s Wholesale Club, at 165 Graphics Drive in Town Madison, is set to open Friday. Local shoppers interested in becoming a BJ’s member can stop by the club once its open or head to BJs.com/Madison to learn more about the benefits of being a BJ’s member.