Monday, April 21, 2014

Upcoming “shake the pail” efforts for the Wallingford Fireworks 2014 event

Hey gang - good morning.

Here is the run down the next few weeks of where we have locations for collecting donations.

The message here is really two fold – we want to let you know where we will be in the hopes that if you’re interested in supporting the effort you can swing by and make a donation. At the same time, we can use some more volunteers if folks have that interest as well; we have more work than people right now so if donating your time is something you’d like to do as well please let me know.

The May 30th deadline set by Mayor Dickinson is just six weeks away and we still need to collect an additional $22,000.00 to lock in the event for 2014.

Here is the upcoming schedule:

Saturday 4/26 planned 8 to 1 at the Landfill and the recycling center (both locations).

Friday 5/2 planned for Stop and Shop around 3:30PM to 7:30PM

Saturday 5/3 planned 8 to 1 at the Landfill, the recycling center and the Yalesville Dunkin Donuts (all three locations)

Friday 5/9 planned for Stop and Shop around 3:30PM to 7:30PM

Saturday 5/10 planned 8 to 1 (possibly to 2 if the traffic volume supports it) at the Landfill and the recycling center (two locations)

 

Thanks again for your support in both monetary donations and the donation of time and effort – both are needed equally to make this a success.

If you’d like to make a donation, you can mail your tax deductible donation (we are a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization - tax id# is 27-2576599) to:

Wallingford Fireworks Fund
c/o 35 Lincoln Drive EXT
Wallingford CT 06492

We also accept donations online via Paypal

 

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Fireworks fundraising collections this Saturday morning April 19th

We are ready to start our collections this morning and we have a hair over $4,000.00 collected all together; that is about 15% of what we need. Normally by this point we are at about $9,000.00; the March collections were seriously impacted due to the long winter. We are hoping the thaw and the mail campaign starts to make up for that.

We also have a dinner fundraiser planned and we’ll be posting details for that this week. 

In the meantime, we had an original collection goal for 2014 of $35,000.00 we have reduced that to the bare minimum of $30,000.00 which puts the performance of the R Band at the show at risk (that is the first thing we have cut in the past to save the overall show as it is a larger item and the show can continue without it as needed). Even by reducing that total cost (for the band and the sound system of $3,190.00) we would still need to collect a bare minimum of $24,250.00. Of that $11,925.00 are the fireworks themselves; $12,325.00 are mainly the town services for police and fire overtime as well as some costs for the the fire marshal and the board of education custodial overtime.

The deadline for these donations, which ever one we meet, is due to the town of Wallingford by May 30th for the show scheduled for July 5th, 2014.

If we cannot collect what is needed to pay for the entire event there will likely be no show this year. At this point in time, just as it has been since 2010, the Town itself is not affording any funding to this event. The job to save the celebration is ours “we the people” to make or break unless something changes.

We will be at the Wallingford Landfill and the Recycling Center until about noon today or perhaps a little later if you can swing by and drop your donation into the bucket.

Alternately – you can mail your tax deductable donation (we are a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization - tax id# is 27-2576599) to:

Wallingford Fireworks Fund
c/o 35 Lincoln Drive EXT
Wallingford CT 06492

We also accept donations online via Paypal  

 

As a reminder of all the costs we have to bear:

Pyrotechnics (fireworks)  $11,925.00

R- Band                       $2,090.00
Sound                          $1,100.00
Public Works               $  400.00
Port-o-Lets                   $  200.00
The above costs are $15,715.00 and the fireworks are $11,925.00 for a total of $27640.00

I am still waiting on the costs for the Fire Marshall, the Board of Ed person for Sheehan and the overtime for the Fire Department and the Police Department as the Fund is responsible for those costs as well.

In 2013 those costs were:

Board of Ed                                   $  425.00
Fire Marshal                                  $  950.00
Fire Department Overtime            $2,100.00
Police Department Overtime        $8,250.00

 

This is our task for 2014. It is up to Wallingford businesses and residents again, as it has been since 2010, to save the show.

We hope you can help out in any way you can; every dollar helps

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Shake the pail collections on Saturday morning April 12th

March as well as the first week of April have come and gone.

Our collection balance is just $3,230.00 presently; that is about 11% of what we need. We had an original collection goal for 2014 of $35,000.00 we have reduced that to the bare minimum of $30,000.00 which puts the performance of the R Band at the show at risk (that is the first thing we have cut in the past to save the overall show as it is a larger item and the show can continue without it as needed.

The deadline for the donation to the town of Wallingford is May 30th for the show scheduled for July 5th, 2014

If we cannot collect what is needed to pay for the entire event there will be no show this year; at this point in time, just as it has been since 2010, the Town itself is not affording any funding to this event. The job to save the celebration is ours “we the people” to make or break.

We will be at the Wallingford Landfill and the Recycling Center until about noon today if you can swing by and drop your donation into the bucket.

Alternately – you can mail your tax deductable donation (we are a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization - tax id# is 27-2576599) to:

Wallingford Fireworks Fund
c/o 35 Lincoln Drive EXT
Wallingford CT 06492

We also accept donations online via Paypal

 

As a reminder of all the costs we have to bear:

Wallingford is going to be able to extend the bid that we had on the show we’ve been getting over the prior two years at $11,925.00

The other costs that they have available for us are as follows:
R- Band                       $2,090.00
Sound                          $1,100.00
Public Works               $  400.00
Port-o-Lets                   $  200.00

The above costs are $15,715.00


I am still waiting on the costs for the Fire Marshall, the Board of Ed person for Sheehan and the overtime for the Fire Department and the Police Department as the Fund is responsible for those costs as well.

In 2013 those costs were:

Board of Ed                                   $  425.00
Fire Marshall                                  $  950.00
Fire Department Overtime            $2,100.00
Police Department Overtime        $8,250.00

So we are looking at least at an additional $11,725.00 on top of the known $15,715.00

This is our task for 2014. It is up to Wallingford businesses and residents again, as it has been since 2010, to save the show.

We hope you can help out in any way you can; every dollar helps.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Fundraising Collections Saturday March 22

It looks like the rain is going to hold off until about noon so Steve and Wayne will be out at the Landfill and the Recycling centers this morning, Saturday March 22nd until about noon or whenever the rain moves in.

It’ll be cold too with temperatures in the 30s until later but we have to get out – normally we would have been out the past three weekends but the remaining snow and the weather made it too difficult to do.

If you’re out and about and want to stop by and throw some change or bills in the collection buckets to help the effort that would be great – please stop by.

Alternately – you can mail your tax deductable donation (we are a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization - tax id# is 27-2576599) to:

Wallingford Fireworks Fund
c/o 35 Lincoln Drive EXT
Wallingford CT 06492

We also accept donations online via Paypal:



Time is short – we have until May 30 – basically eight more weeks to try to reach our 2014 fundraising goal of $35,000.00

We can do it. We’ve done it four years running and with your help we’ll do it again.

Thank you

Jason Zandri
President – Wallingford Fireworks Fund
http://www.wallingfordfireworks.org/

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Fundraising meeting to be held; open call for volunteers

We have some of the information on “exact” costs of the services from the Wallingford Parks and Recreation Department.

Wallingford is going to be able to extend the bid that we had on the show we’ve been getting over the prior two years at $11,925.00

The other costs that they have available for us are as follows:

R- Band                       $2,090.00
Sound                          $1,100.00
Public Works               $  400.00
Port-o-Lets                   $  200.00

The above costs are $15,715.00

I am still waiting on the costs for the Fire Marshall, the Board of Ed person for Sheehan and the overtime for the Fire Department and the Police Department as the Fund is responsible for those costs as well.

In 2013 those costs were:

Board of Ed                                   $  425.00
Fire Marshall                                  $  950.00
Fire Department Overtime            $2,100.00
Police Department Overtime        $8,250.00

So we are looking at least at an additional $11,725.00 on top of the known $15,715.00

The long winter has hampered our early donation collection efforts - in prior years we would have been already out the past two weekends and this one as well. We are hoping to get started next weekend so with that we are going to hold our fundraising meeting and we are making an open call to those that want to volunteer their time to help out.

We will be meeting on Tuesday March 18th at Gaetano’s Tavern on Main at 7:30PM to discuss fundraising efforts and possible event between now and the end of May when The Fund needs to make the donation to the town.

Please consider joining the effort even if you have only a few hours to spare overall – we can use all the help we can get. 

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Campus at Greenhill 2014 Wallingford Fireworks Celebration - Wallingford Fireworks Fund

With the first weekend of March here, as we have in each of the past four (save year one), we are kicking off our fundraising campaign.

This year we are presented with many headwind challenges starting with the weather.

In years past we would have tried to collections started this week (and in the past have) but with eight inches of snow on the ground and more forecasted we are hampered to even begin and it looks as if next weekend will be equally impaired.

Now it might sound like there’s plenty of time but there really isn’t. Although the fireworks are not normally scheduled until the Saturday after the 4th (which this year will be July 5th) the money is due to the Town of Wallingford per Mayor Dickinson’s directive by the last Friday in May which is the 30th.

That leaves us just 12 weeks to collect donations.

Last year was very successful – with Campus at Greenhilll as the Naming Convention Sponsor for the second year in a row (2012 and 2013) we were able to keep pulling donations right to the very last week and were able to restore the R Band performance which we never had been able to do prior. We are hopeful for the same success this year as well from both the perspective of keeping Campus at Greenhilll as the Naming Convention Sponsor as well as locking in the performance by the R Band.

Our efforts and your donations from 2013 covered every expense of the show – from the fireworks themselves to the Police and Fire department overtime as the Town of Wallingford shares none of the expenses of the show and hasn’t since the 2010 cancellation. We are expecting more of the same for this year as well. (I will be confirming with a call to the Mayor’s office on Monday March 3rd).

As such the costs are estimated as follows (from 2013 and expected to increase for 2014 as all costs do):

Fireworks Show 2014   $11,925.00
Police Overtime   $8,250.00
Fire Department / Overtime   $2,100.00
Port-o-lets   $200.00
Fire Marshall   $950.00
Public Works   $425.00
Board of Ed   $425.00
R Band and Sound   $3,400.00
2014 Total Show expense   $27,675.00

Now the variables.

The contract with the prior fireworks vendor has expired and the cost for the fireworks has to go out to bid. The Town of Wallingford does this – the Fireworks Fund has no part in that process.

The 2010 show was our most expensive at $16,500.00 (with the total cost of the show that year of $28,312.00 and the performance by the R Band was cut because we barely made the amount needed).

So as of right now we have no hard, fast cost on the fireworks themselves.

I have a letter in the mail to Comptroller Jim Bowes to hammer out the costs of all the Wallingford services overtime so at least with will become a known quantity.

The other major impact this year is the loss of a major work contributor on behalf of the effort in my father Geno Zandri Jr. He has been a solid supporter of the effort in years past dedicating hundreds of hours to the pail shaking collection efforts but like so many other people today – he has to curtail his time in a major way with so many other things he has going on.

His loss will be significantly felt.

Steve Murray, Wayne Montefusco and I have sat down to discuss what to do and we have split up the work and we are off.

As much as we need people’s donations we need people’s time as well to help us with the collection efforts this year.

In a week or two we will have a formal fundraising committee meeting and we are hoping new workers will step up to help.

The three of us have talked and have decided we’ll commit the time, some personal money, and effort to the cause.

The rest is up to Wallingford as it always has been to save the show once again.

Let’s roll.

Friday, October 4, 2013

RREMINDER - Wallingford Fireworks Fund will be collecting at Celebrate Wallingford THIS WEEKEND – October 5th and 6th


The weather looks like it has turned a bit for Celebrate Wallingford this weekend Saturday October 5th and Sunday the 6th.

We will be there regardless; Saturday is the longer of the two days and looks to be the better chance of good weather.

Please come by our 2014 fundraising booth and say hello

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Time to return a favor Wallingford – let’s support Stephanie Clock on her efforts in the Susan G. Komen Marathon for the Cure

Hi Wallingford Fireworks supporters. I am writing to you this morning on behalf of an event, a spot in the Chicago Marathon, that Stephanie Clock is participating in.

Most of you do not know who Stephanie Clock is but if you are a fan of the Wallingford Fireworks you should.

She has been an integral part of the people at Gale Development and Campus at Greenhill that have supported our Wallingford Fireworks show over the past two years and granting the fund $30,000.00 in donations in 2012 and 2013.

With her current efforts to run the race she is fundraising and I would like Wallingford to consider helping out her cause.

Her goal as listed on her page is $1,500.00, presently she is sitting at $585.00 and Race day is October 13th.

Here is my ask Wallingford, let’s make donations online and get her over that mark. Let’s support her effort like she supports ours and in the same manner - $10.00 or whatever at a time.

Send me your receipt that you donated (forward me via email the acknowledgement of your donation – Jason@Zandri.net) and I will match all the donations up to $500.00 personally.

So what say you Wallingford? Let’s “pay” the goodwill and the kindness back and all for a good cause.

Thank you for the consideration.

Monday, September 9, 2013

News regarding our fundraising booth at Celebrate Wallingford

Hi gang – first and foremost I wanted to let everyone know we will be at Celebrate the whole weekend like last year and each of the prior years.

If you’d like to make a donation for 2014 we’ll be collecting and if you supported us for 2013 please stop by so we can say “thank you.”

I will be circling back shortly with more details on this over the next couple of weeks.



I would also like to take this time to address a recent issue brought up with our efforts with the Fund and my being the President of the fund and running for Mayor this election season.

Celebrate Wallingford has been run by Wallingford Center INC. since its inception and it’s always been a rule there that Political Action Committees (PACs) as well as Political Parties are not allowed to have or sponsor booths as a permanent presence at the event.

We’ve all seen politicians making the rounds at Celebrate, walking around and talking to people and this was always accepted as a necessary evil by WCI as there really isn’t much you can do with people walking around in public short of them breaking a law.

This year however with my running for Mayor there was some escalating discussion with WCI regarding changing the rules to permit Political Action Committees (PACs) as well as Political Parties to have or sponsor booths as a permanent presence at the event. This was partially predicated on my being there in my capacity for the Fireworks despite the fact that I ran a successful Council campaign in 2011 and ran my booth at Celebrate for the fireworks without issue or “confusion”.

This change was voted on and approved. The pressure was on to make the change effective this year but it is going to be deferred until 2014 as there just isn’t enough time for WCI to undertake all the changes.

In the interest of full disclosure and transparency I am making public my email exchange with the Director of WCI on this matter:

From: Elizabeth Landow [mailto:lizlandow@wallingfordcenterinc.com]
Sent: Monday, September 09, 2013 11:03 AM
To: Jason Zandri
Subject: celebrate

Hey Jason -

Just wanted to let you know that I did decide to postpone letting the two parties have a food booth until next year - we will be allowing it in Celebrate 2014 - but taking the time to come up with proper guidelines.

As we already spoken about,  I have been getting much feedback positive and negative about this - one concern that has been expressed is that you have a booth for the fireworks and the other party is concerned that the booth will be used as a "Democratic" booth and they cannot have a "Republican" booth - and that there will be fundraising done for your party out of that booth.

I explained that is a "FireWorks" booth only and you reassured me that you will be not be campaigning in the booth -  you have (avoided doing) this in the past and respected the fact that the booth was for fireworks fundraising only - you always leave the booth and walk around in order to do your meeting and greeting.

I love having the fireworks booth at Celebrate - I think it is very important - but I do want to make sure that the politics are left outside of the tent - I am confident you will do that because you gave me your word and that is good enough for me - I guess what I am trying to say - is just if you could keep it from becoming a "democratic" hangout - I would appreciate it

Thanks for your help and for listening to me the other day - I do appreciate the fact that you always give me your support!

Thanks so much

Liz

 

-----Original Message-----
From: jason@zandri.net [mailto:jason@zandri.net]
Sent: Monday, September 09, 2013 11:43 AM
To: Elizabeth Landow
Cc: Jason Zandri; attyvinavallone@snet.net; pagouveia@snet.net
Subject: Re: celebrate

Hi Liz,

Thank you for taking the time to have the phone conversation the other day with me regarding all of this.

Please feel free to forward this email directly to anyone that needs to see it as an on the record response for any questions they have from what you've communicated below and I will make the response as part of public disclosure. As to the main concern - I'll address that current point now.

"One concern that has been expressed is that you have a booth for the fireworks and the other party is concerned that the booth will be used as a "Democratic" booth and they cannot have a "Republican" booth -and that there will be fundraising done for your party out of that booth."

As I mentioned to you prior, I ran for Council in 2011 and fundraised for the Fireworks for 2012 out of the 2011 Celebrate booth. I did zero fundraising for that whole campaign (I spent less than $1,000.00 on that election so there was no fundraising to speak of). I have two formal fundraisers planned for later in October so I have neither the need nor the desire to “mix or confuse” the funds being donated at the Fireworks Booth – those funds are all to be for the fireworks in the event that funding is needed for 2014. If someone wanted to make a campaign donation I would hand them my treasurer’s contact information (my sister) and ask that they contact her. This would be no different in my opinion than someone approaching the Mayor in the Recycling Booth (or wherever he might stand that day) and doing the same – I would presume he would pass the supporter along to his treasurer so in my estimation that playing field is equal.

I am content enough in the interest of fairness to allow Mr. Prentice, Mayor Dickinson or any Republican candidate that wishes, full access to the booth so they can walk around and inspect. I have nothing to hide in there.

Steven and Wayne are scheduled to help me in the booth and I will tell them they can wear the Fireworks shirts or any other ones but not my campaign ones in the booth. As long as I am in the booth I will not wear my campaign shirts either.

I would expect the same courtesies from the Republicans as well. As an example – if John Letourneau is selling lamps out of a booth I would not expect it to become a “long term” Republican “hangout”. I am sure 10 to 15 minutes of collective group standing can be presumed to occur “naturally” at an event like this but if it happens more than two or three times it’s going to be assumed to be done intentionally.

The same can be said in my prior example of the Mayor standing at the Recycle booth; let’s collectively agree that we all should keep the times to where the candidates are grouping together accidentally and unintentionally to a couple of occurrences and for less than 15 minutes.

The same would be true at the Registrar’s booth where Chet Miller works; let’s be mindful of the collective gathering there.

I think we can all agree with the considerations above that the playing field is level but if there are still concerns please let me know right away and I will address them directly.

Thank you

Jason Zandri