Sunday, July 5, 2009

Upcoming Events

July 18th
Bring the whole fam to Annie Bazzoli's Little Kid Carnival
August 22nd
First ever Brothers in Blue Motorcycle Ride and After Party @ IBEW Pavillion. After the ride there will be a live band and food.
August 30th
Sal's Pals Golf Outing @ Fallen Timbers
email us for more info at

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Dance For Chance

Back around Christmas time my neighbor, 15 year old Katie asked if I would be willing to come to her freshman health class to help her and a friend do a presentation on CF. The girls did a great job and I was really surprised at how attentive the students were. I did not have my side kick there with me that day (Sal was at school). The kids always love to listen to Sal, especially the girls, he defiantly always seems to know just what to say to them. Katie's older brother Matt also attends Southview High School and has always been very involved with a group called Dance for Chance. The Dance for Chance is an event in itself. Kids from the high school participate by creating teams. In order to participate the kids must raise money for charities that the kids vote on. This year my two neighbor cuties nominated Sal's Pals as one of the recipient charities and we won! Now there is a bit of irony surrounding this situation. Sal's older sister Olivia attends the rival school in town, Northview. Sal also happens to be the ball boy for the Northview girl's basketball team. And can you guess who the teacher was that was leading the event... the Girl's assistant Varsity Basketball Coach! However, on this day, were all part of one community coming together. Matt let Sal be part of his "Green Team" and every hour he did the dance and stayed on his feet as the kids were not allowed to sit from noon until midnight. Throughout the day the kids had activities from basketball, to Jenga, to name that tune. For each activity the teams were scored and whoever had the most points at the end of the day got bragging rights for the rest of the year. The students raised over $21,000 for 3 area charities. At the end of the night the students presented Sal with a check. To those teachers, especially Steve Swaggerty, who inspire our youth each and every day to be better citizens and responsible, caring people the world needs more of you! To Katie and Matt, thanks for being such wonderful thoughtful neighbors and for realizing that you can make a difference and of course for putting a great big smile on Sal's face!

7th Annual Sal's Pals Charity Event

Well I feel absolutely terrible! 6 months have gone by and I have failed miserably at my New Year's resolution! The good news is that I did get A's in each of 8 classes that I took over the last 6 months. I have been a little busy, but no excuses. I have a lot of catching up to do and lots of new events to spread the word on!
First things first.... Sal's Pals 7th Annual Dinner proved to be another spectacular night. Given the economy we were all a little worried as to how our attendance and profits would go. $90,000 later we got our answer. Many events across the country had been canceled due to the economy, but our event actually grew. We were able to reach out to many new faces and those new faces branch out and it just keeps going strong. A big thanks to our volunteer of the year Maria Jiannuzzi, and the sponsor of the year UPS. Both are pictured above, this year would not have been as successful without their continued support!
One memory that sticks out in my mind from this year's event happened during the Bid For a Cure Speech. Rick and Sal started the bidding off at one-thousand dollars. Never in a millions years did I think that we would get a 1000 dollar sponsor, but we had to start somewhere. Just as I was glancing over at Rick to start moving things along, I saw Rick's eyes light up and yell out, "Thank you, thank you so much!" Sal jumped up and down on the stage and Rick nearly forgot he needed to keep going, I started to pan the room to find out who this mystery bidder could be and then I spotted her as she was writing out the check. As I got closer to the table I saw my good friend Bree walking from the table with tears coming down her face. The mystery bidder happened to be Tricia Schweer. Tricia is the mother of 3 year-old Briahna Schweer. Briahna was diagnosed with a very rare mass that was invading her chest cavity involving her heart and lungs. Her recent surgery was extremely life threatening, but to not have the surgery had an even worse prognosis. Briahna's family and friends put together a benefit to try and help raise money to offset the family's medical expenses during their very difficult time. Many of the Sal's Pals committee members helped the family to organize the event, sell tickets and even work. Rick and I attended the event and I remember the family thanking us, Sal's Pals, for all of our help. I felt that my help was so trivial in the whole grand scheme of things but Rick leaned over to me and whispered, its not what we have done, it's what we have helped to create. Looking around the room we had at least 10 of our committee members there supporting the event. None of them knew Brianna or her parents but they knew how to run a charity event. I have never been so proud of my friends and family as I was that night.
As for Briahna, she was able to finally have surgery and is recovering. Last I heard she was doing remarkably well. As for Sal's Pals, we were able to reach out and help another family in the same way that the community has reached out and helped us. As for the Schweer family their strength and generosity is a constant reminder of what charity work is all about!