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

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.