Photo provided by Allison Wrenn -- Members of the Runnels Parents’ Organization 50th Anniversary Committee members are, from left, Kristy Mayes, Nicole Latiolais, Chair Sarah Haase, Dana Schlotterer and Gina Golda.

Runnels, one of the oldest independent schools in Baton Rouge, is celebrating its 50th anniversary Oct. 4 with a gala and fundraiser at the Lod Cook Alumni Center at LSU.

Founded in 1965 by Dr. L.K. Runnels, the school began as a preschool.

In 1970, Runnels expanded to include elementary grades, and in 1983, junior and senior high schools were added.

A series of school and community events is planned to celebrate the anniversary.

The gala will feature a retrospective of Runnels School and an auction with proceeds benefiting the Runnels Plaza Project.

Entertainment will be provided by Party at Joe’s, and a buffet will be catered by Unique Cuisine.

The gala will include a raffle drawing for a $10,000 backyard makeover.

Tickets for the gala and grand raffle are available at www.runnelsrpo.org and at the Runnels Admissions and Information Building, 17255 S. Harrell’s Ferry Road. Individual tickets are $70, and table seating for 10 is available for $800. For more information, call (225) 215-5706 or visit www.runnels.org.