Second Financial Reality Fair Extravaganza Estimated to Reach Nearly 3,000 (and Counting)

A student learns budgeting during a reality fair earlier this year.

Earlier this year, 11 Northwest credit unions shared financial education with hundreds of Northwest students during simultaneous Financial Reality Fairs. Students were exposed to tangible situations they will see as adults, with credit union staff and teachers helping them work through issues.

In August, the Northwest Credit Union Foundation announced plans on another cooperative event: a second Financial Reality Fair Extravaganza, bringing together credit unions to ingite their reality fairs under one umbrella, and reach as many students as possible at once.

Where the first Financial Reality Fair Extravaganza reached approximately 600 students, the sequel is already estimated to reach nearly 3,000 students, with more Northwest credit unions left to confirm participation.

Most credit unions are slated to host fairs around International Credit Union Day on October 20, with Sunset Science Park (Portland, OR), hosting two, Richland, WA’s Gesa Credit Union partnering with Kennewick School District for another, and Oregon State Credit Union in Corvallis hosting two with Gervais High School (one in the morning, and another later on).

Point West Credit Union is partnering with Springdale Job Corp Center to co-locate resources, while Eugene, Oregon’s Northwest Community Credit Union is in the planning stages for their effort.

“We’re excited to see the students put their learning into practice and make different financial choices based on what they learned last time,” said Jen McFadden, Northwest Community Credit Union Marketing Manager. “The Financial Reality Fair materials have been a great resource for us. We held a financial reality fair during our 2016 Bring Your Child to Work day at our Support Center HQ and it was a big hit with parents/employees and their kiddos.”

“We’re so grateful to those credit unions that have not just utilized the resources, but in a larger sense, taken up the mantle of providing financial education in their communities,” said Denise Gabel, Executive Director of the Northwest Credit Union Foundation. “They walk the walk of the Credit Union Difference.”

How can your credit union get involved?

Some participating credit unions have taken advantage of prepackaged, turnkey Financial Reality Fair Kits—a $600 resource, free to their credit unions, enabling them to hit the ground running at their fairs. To inquire about kits, or find out how your credit union can volunteer in other ways, contact Northwest Credit Union Association Program Manager Kaitlin Ramos, at 503.350.2208 or

Questions about this story? Contact Eric Horvath: 503.350.2222,

Posted in Around the NW, NWCUA.