Monday, July 22, 2013

Good Wine...Good Cause...Great Thanks!

Thanks to everyone who attended the Wine Tasting and Concert to benefit MRF while honoring the memory of Amanda Wall and Corey Hadden.  And some apologies as well for posting photo after photo of the event…I hope I didn’t overwhelm your Facebook on Saturday night.  J  There were so many highlights to the evening that I’m not sure I can cover them all here.  The photos at the end will address most of them (yep, these are some of what I posted on Facebook!). 

The turn-out was phenomenal.  We hoped for 300 or so people and I suspect we reached that goal.  I don’t have the money figures, but I know we sold about $500+ worth of raffle tickets and another $500 or so 50/50 raffle tickets (where winner gets half the pot and MRF gets the other half).  Add in some of the proceeds from food sales and wine-tasting tickets and I’d say we made a decent chunk of money.  So again, thank you!

I want to personally thank those BITNP readers and supporters that answered my call for contributions.  A HUGE shout-out goes out to Heather Olson of Coolibar, Anthony Guerra of Brelli, and Susan Aceti of 31 Bags.  If I do say so myself, your items were the hit of the raffle!   
31 Bag and Brelli share a chair at the raffle!

Coolibar Gift Basket!
I had a handful of highlights of a more personal nature.  First of all, I always love meeting new people who have read my blog or Facebook page.  Most readers have been touched somehow by melanoma and this was true of both Celene and Summer with whom I had the privilege of meeting in person!  Each lovely lady shared their individual stories with me…each quite different but equally heartfelt, touching and inspiring.  Living so close to me, I hope I can cross paths with each again soon!

Celene and her husband Kevin
Summer with yours truly

The second personal highlight was meeting local morning news anchor Kelcey Carlson.  My family wakes up to her broadcast on WRAL every morning and I’ve always thoroughly enjoyed her presence.  To my great joy, she was as engaging and nice in person as she is on TV.  Her family had been touched by melanoma in the past and she was kind enough to stop by to be interviewed for a video to promote the 2014 Amanda Wall – Corey Hadden Memorial Walk.  I was a bit star struck…but also very happy to meet her and hear her story.  Thank you Kelcey!


Thirdly, not only was Kelcey interviewed, so was I!  I’ve stated here before that I’m not much of a speaker, but Don Jones (Amanda’s Dad) asked me to appear in the video and I couldn’t say no.  I was mic’ed up and then asked a few questions about melanoma awareness, my “relationship” with the disease, and a little bit about BITNP.  The interviewer did a great job and I hope I was able to contribute in a positive way.

Ready for my close up!

The evening went a long way toward raising funds and melanoma awareness, but we have a long way to go.  There were several women in attendance wearing bare-shouldered tops that revealed very distinct tan lines.  Also, there was one line in a performed song that stated, “My tan is fading, I need a beach!” (A Jimmy Buffett song I think).  No fault of the performer at all (he was great!)…just a reminder of how far we have to go to truly raise awareness….REAL awareness!

Now…on with the photos!

Big Mike's BBQ supplied the food!  (The Redneck Nachos were to die for...Fritos, Pulled Pork, Baked Beans, Blue Cheese Slaw and BBQ Sauce..yum!)
The Niche Wine Lounge hosted the event...thank you Niche!

Evening entertainment by Bud Moffett and the Reef-ettes!

Early evening band was Long Time Gone!

Serving cool brews in the shade!

We're talking a REAL wine tasting!

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