Saturday was an interesting day! On a 31* "spring" day with snow in the air, over 225 people had the guts to jump into the icy water of Canandaigua Lake to raise money for Special Olympians. I know because I was there to witness this heroic plunge.
The air temperature at 31*, winds gusting to 40 mph and water temp of 35* did not deter these brave folks who were literally on a mission. Kudos to Terry Howell and Greg Constantino who were instrumental in motivating so many to help others. I salute their determination and bravery.
The Polar Plunge was just one of many events that I was honored to be part of this weekend. Friday night I was the master of ceremonies for the retirement party in honor of outgoing Greece Police Dept. Chief of Police Todd Baxter. Todd is a great man who has led the GPD with strength and focus for the last 4 years. He now joins the Veteran's Outreach Center as Executive Director. A veteran himself from the US Army, he is a perfect leader and friend. Greece was lucky to have him as a compass to forge a new path for a department filled with good people. He is now poised to help and support his fellow vets. God bless Todd, his beautiful wife Mary and sons Kevin and Zach in their new quest to better the world for our courageous heroes.
After MCing the Polar Plunge Sat. morning, I then was part of a fundraiser for a wonderful woman in Canandaigua. Patty Hotchkiss is the owner of Patty's Place, a gathering place for hungry folks on Main St. in Cdga. She opens her restaurant every Thanksgiving and Christmas to provide a free holiday meal for those who have nowhere else to share holiday cheer. On this past Saturday many of those people joined 500 others from the community to donate $ to help defray costs associated with some medical issues Patty has dealt with. It was quite a tribute to a woman who cares so deeply for others. Much love was shared by Patty's friends and family in my hometown.
Sunday was a day of music and celebration of the arts as I was master of ceremonies at Artisan Works on Blossom Rd. Dr. Marc Rossow organized this benefit to help raise needed funds for Rochester Arts Advocate, a group dedicated to furthering the hopes and dreams of aspiring artists and musicians here in town. Many local celebs donated their time to entertain the crowd, led by News 10NBC's Brett Davidson, Vanessa Herring from News 8, Erica Bryant from the Democrat & Chronicle and John Fiorica from the Locust Club of the Rochester Police Dept. It was a very successful day loaded with music and laughs.
As I write this, I have no voice after all the words I shouted over the weekend. Needless to say, this is not a good thing for a man whose job is to speak on the radio. But losing my voice is a small price to pay for such a rewarding weekend surrounded by so many great people dedicated to helping others. God bless them all and God bless our troops.