Well everyone – a full spring of hard work has paid off.
We reached our goal of collecting $30,000.00 for the 2012 celebration a full week early – thanks in large part to Campus at Greenhill and their $10,000.00 Naming Convention Sponsorship to the celebration as well as their $5,000.00 matching grant to donations over the month of April.
At the same time, we couldn’t have gotten here without every donation that came in one dollar at a time from everyday folks as well as the businesses that took ads in our 2012 program guide.
The donations from Campus at Greenhill, while large and deeply appreciated, were not enough on their own to restore the 2012 event.
The donations from local people and those far and wide (I’ve received donations from individuals that live in West Hartford, Berlin, Meriden, Glastonbury, New York City as well as Fort Myers Beach, Florida) all by themselves were needed but also not enough to save the 2012 event.
The generous efforts and courtesies of business like Dunkin Donuts of Wallingford, which allow us to stand and collect for two months and gather over $5,000.00 from their customers is also appreciated but again – not enough all by itself to save the event.
The dedication of the few volunteers (very few – we need more help for 2013, pretty please) is invaluable, especially the work done by the Ricci family in helping get the group together to do a 5,000 piece literature drop over the past couple of weeks (in between the raindrops).
The small fundraising committee that got together this year was also helpful and I am looking forward to engaging with them over the remainder of the year as we do other things to benefit the 2013 event. As before, I want to see that committee grow as well.
I would be remiss to not express my thanks to my father Geno Zandri Jr who actually spent more time collecting donations this year than I could. With my work in NYC and duties on the Council this year I simply ran out of bandwidth to do anymore than I did.
Thanks Dad – couldn’t have gotten it done without your help.
I also need to thank my kids, who basically lose their Dad for about twelve weeks every year to this effort.
Little ones, this year you are home for the summer; you’ll get to see what all the excitement is about on July 7th as we celebrate the nation’s birthday. I hope you’ll be infected by my passion for our country someday but if not to that degree I hope you will learn to appreciate mine.
There are many others that help out in small ways and I know I can’t mention everyone by name nor remember all the things they’ve done but I appreciate their efforts, consideration and generosity all the same.
Most of all, I want to remind everyone now for 2013 and beyond, this show will most likely NEVER be paid for by the town again out of taxes at least as long as the current administration is in place and / or if future administrations are in agreement to this thought process.
I will always insist that the Town should at least partner in this effort and cover the expenses of the Town services like the police and fire department overtime costs that run about half the cost of the entire show.
Right now the Fund covers everything and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.
Having said that – if we the people want to have this event take place each year, we are going to have to keep donating to the cause; lest we find ourselves like so many other communities that have lost their celebrations to cost cutting efforts that effectively send no real tangible savings back to the taxpayer. (The full cost of the 4th of July celebration in Wallingford sets the average household back no more than three dollars in taxes.)
“We the people” need to remember, we can do anything and will continue to do so.
Don’t let anyone tell you anything differently and when they try to convince you that you cannot fight “city hall” invite them to sit with you during the Wallingford Independence Day celebration for 2012 and tell them “we’ve saved this show three times now.”
With your continued help we will do so, forevermore.