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Pizzeria sul Lago donates $2,000 to help nonprofit hire and retain additonal teachers

REVIEW PHOTO: GARY M. STEIN - Lake Oswego Schools Foundation Executive Director Mary Kay Larson accepts a $2,000 donation from Pizzeria sul Lago General Manager Tim Mattera (center) and Executive Chef Nick Ford.One of Lake Oswego's newest businesses made a big contribution to one of the city's most popular nonprofits last week.

Pizzeria sul Lago, which recently opened downtown at 315 First St. in Lake View Village, vowed to donate all of the proceeds from its sales between 3 p.m. and close on May 16 to the Lake Oswego Schools Foundation. On Friday, General Manager Tim Mattera and Executive Chef Nick Ford made good on that promise with a check for $2,000.

Ford said he was happy to be able to give back to the Lake Oswego community through the Foundation.

"The Lake Oswego community has given us such a warm welcome since day one," he said. "Lake Oswego is all about community, and we're excited that we can give back to the families that live here through organizations like the Lake Oswego Schools Foundation."

Foundation Executive Director Mary Kay Larson said the organization uses donations to hire and retain additional teachers, who typically can be found at every school in the district; the $1.5 million raised last year currently funds the equivalent of 20 full-time teachers in Lake Oswego classrooms.

The Foundation started its current campaign with the goal of partnering with more local businesses — a relationship that's beneficial to everyone involved. The businesses provide much-needed contributions to the Foundation, Larson said, and the Foundation helps introduce new families (and longtime residents, too) to businesses they may not be familiar with.

With the recent influx of new businesses opening in downtown Lake Oswego, there are more opportunities for the Foundation to form partnerships, Larson said.

"It's exciting to have new vibrance downtown with new businesses that help support institutions like the Lake Oswego Schools Foundation," she said. "We have wonderfu, established businesses that have always been big supporters, so it's wonderful to see new businesses come in and instantly recognize the value of the Foundation and what we mean to the community."

The Foundation recently partnered with another new downtown business: Salt & Straw Ice Cream, which opened a shop in The Windward at the corner of First Street and A Avenue. At a preview event on the night before its official opening, the company sold $1 scoops to benefit the Foundation, and the community showed up in droves. An estimated 800 people formed a line around the block, resulting in a $1,596 donation.

"What's really important to us is being part of great neighborhoods and strong communities where we can partner with organizations like the Schools Foundation and provide a gathering place for people," said Salt & Straw co-founder Kim Malek.

"As we've grown, I don't think we can (nor should) exist as a company if we can't have a positive impact in each neighborhood we do business in," co-founder Tyler Malek told The Review. "The only way for a business to be successful is if they care for their neighbors and work diligently to support the public schools and local nonprofits. A strong business can only succeed in a strong community."

For more information on the LO Schools Foundation, visit http://losfoundation.org.

Contact Lake Oswego Review reporter Claire Holley at 503-636-1281 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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