All Norfolk Curling Club Bonspiels (tournaments) have been canceled for the 2020-21 season. The Club typically hosts four Bonspiels every year between the end of November and the end of February at its 70 Golf Drive location in Norfolk, CT.
In addition, activities at the Curling Club’s facilities has been modified because of the pandemic. Besides the Bonspiels, such fundraisers as Learn to Curl and rental events have been canceled.
Curling for members- only will commence in mid January and run through mid April. Only one sweeper will be allowed during play.
For more information visit https://norfolkcurlingclub.org/.
SportingAcause.com will post and promote alternative fundraisers for the Norfolk Curling Club as well as other area non-profits that have had to cancel their sports-related fundraisers due to the pandemic.
Entry Fee: $40.
What you get: running jacket, winter hat, participation medallion.
Portion of entry fee to charity: $ 0.
You may have noticed the explosion of Virtual Runs on Facebook lately, but not all of them are what they seem. Some of them are local races supporting local causes that have turned virtual because of the pandemic. I have many of them here on sportingAcause.com.
But a huge wave of what I call manufactured events have washed ashore with names like Smashed Santa Races, Wine Run Turkey Trot, Run for the Dogs, Face Mask Run and the one described above- America’s Turkey Trot.
These “fundraiser” virtual races provide a lesson in Buyer Beware.
America’s Turkey Trot, for example, has partnered with Feeding America, a nation-wide hunger charity, but the word “partner” is open to interpretation.
Although America’s Turkey Trot boasts Feeding America as a partner, no money from your entry fee will go to the charity. Instead, when you register (and pay), you will be encouraged to write your own check to support the work of Feeding America. Not quite what you thought, right?
Is this illegal? – no.
Is it unethical? – um…
Is it transparent? Absolutely not!
To be fair, probably some will write an additional check to Feeding America, and that’s a good thing.
But the takeaway here is that if a virtual “fundraiser” event does not tell you exactly how much of your money is benefiting whom, then sign up for a local event instead, one that maybe supports a food bank in your town, one that tells you how much of your entry fee goes to help your neighbors.
Now that’s transparency!
The Jane Lloyd Fund Clambake has been canceled for 2020. Organizers hope to hold some kind of event later in the year, but plans are incomplete. SportingAcause.com will provide updates when available.
The Jane Lloyd Fund provides living expenses for cancer sufferers in Connecticut’s Region 1 school district and beyond.
For more information visit https://www.thejanelloydfund.org/.
Event organizers are waiting as long as they possibly can before making the gut-churning decision to cancel or maybe postpone their fundraisers. So much is at stake after all- hours of planning expended, sponsorship money gathered from businesses and already spent, and of course, the prospect of losing the funds that the event would provide – funds that already hold a place in charities’ budget projections.
As Covid-19 chugs along, a 30 day yardstick seems to be the unofficial measurement where charities decide to throw in the towel. 100% of the sports-related fundraisers on sportingAcause.com have been cancelled, postponed or altered for the months of April and May. These are mini tragedies in an ocean of Covid- induced tragedies.
The latest event changes on the sportingAcause.com website include the cancellation of the Litchfield Hills Road Race; Line Rock Park has postponed both its season-opening Touring Car Festival (date to be determined) and the Memorial Day Classic (new date Oct. 16-17). Also, the entire Walk MS series through June has become virtual.
Here is the list of April and May events that have been cancelled, postponed or virtualized.
Bring On the Heat 4th Annual 5K (Bethlehem, CT) rescheduled to July 25th
Arlington Education Foundation 5K Run/Walk (Lagrange. NY) Cancelled
Shane Kinsella Memorial 5 Mile Run (Goshen, CT) Rescheduled to Sept. 12th
Upton Lake Christian School Eagle Run (Clinton Corners, NY) Rescheduled to Sept. 12th
Wellness 5K (Pittsfield, MA) Cancelled
Kiwanis Kingston 5K (Kingston, NY) Cancelled
Ride 1 Rally at Lime Rock Park (Lime Rock, CT) postponed date TBA
Spring Splash (Lakeville, CT) Cancelled
Gilbert Blue and Gold 5K and Golf Tournament (Winsted, CT) Cancelled
Angel in the Infield Softball Tournament (Canaan, CT) Cancelled
Kentucky Derby Social (Salisbury, CT) Rescheduled to Sept. 5th
Touring Car Festival at Lime Rock Park (Lime Rock, CT) Postponed date TBA
Sharon Classic 35th Annual Road Race (Sharon. CT) Rescheduled to Sept. 26th.
Sean’s Ride and Sean’s Run (Chatham, NY) Cancelled
Girls Just Wanna Run 5K (Litchfield, CT) Cancelled
Retro Run 5K (Morris, CT) Cancelled
Kenny Krom Memorial Basketball Game (Sheffield, MA) Cancelled
Arrest and Extinguish ALS (Lenox, MA) Cancelled
Touring Car Festival at Lime Rock Park (Lakeville, CT) Postponed date TBD
NW CT Rod and Gun Club Steel Challenge Pistol Match (Canaan, CT) Postponed TBD
Annual Women’s Running Race (Pittsfield, MA) Virtual
Wa Wa Wally Waddle (Poughkeepsie, NY) Virtual
AFSP Run For Hope (Bethlehem, CT) Postponed to June 6th
Camphill Village 5K ( Copake, NY) Postponed Date TBD
Steel Rail Half Marathon (Lanesboro, MA) Virtual
Shine On 5K ( Burlington, CT) Rescheduled to Sept. 20th
Walk a Mile in Her Shoes SBA Project (Litchfield, CT) Postponed Date TBD
Barkhamsted Elementary School Annual River Run 5K (Barkhamsted, CT) Cancelled
Relay For Life Marist College (Poughkeepsie, NY) Postponed Date TBD
Berkshire South Community Center 8th Annual 5K Run (Great Barrington, MA) Virtual
Litchfield/Morris Rotary Club Golf Tournament ( Fairview Farm ) Cancelled
United Way/Charlie Ormsby Golf Tournament (Torrington CC) Rescheduled to June 15th, may re-reschedule
Berkshire County ARC Golf Tournament (Berkshire Hills CC) Postponed Date TBD
Litchfield Hills Road Race (Litchfield, CT) Cancelled
Memorial Day Classic at Lime Rock Park (Lakeville, CT) Postponed to Oct. 16-17
I was wrong.
I’ve said it many times – for non-profits, volunteers are second in importance only to donations- money first, volunteers second.
Saturday, Development Manager for the Alzheimer’s Association- CT Chapter Tina Hogan set me straight.
” I couldn’t accomplish anything without volunteers,” she said, ” They are more important than anything”. She made her point by listing a dozen tasks that volunteers perform- office volunteers, community representatives, graphic/web design, community educators, special events, and more. “The Walk to End Alzheimer’s takes 50 to 100 volunteers alone” Tina told me.
And that was why Tina and her crew were at the Falls Village Inn this past Saturday- for the Alzheimer’s Association Leap into Action Volunteer Kickoff to recruit help for a busy upcoming season of activities and beyond. And they were successful – 25 folks came and signed up to help!
Some of them no doubt will be lending a hand for The Longest Day (June 21st) and The Walk to End Alzheimer’s which will be held for the first time at Lime Rock Park in October. LRP has chosen the Alzheimer’s Association as its signature charity this year.
You will be able to find the details of both events on sportingAcause.com.
Evidence shows that people want to help out charities, both through donations and volunteerism, but often don’t know where to start. Here’s how: email alz.org/ct and offer your services. They can use all skill sets. Or contact another local charity whose mission is dear to your heart. They can all use the help.
For my final blog of 2019 I have listed the charities that have found their way into sportingAcause.com. It is a long scroll, but I hope you will take the moment to roll it. You will see the massive national and international charities that tackle diseases like Alzheimer’s, breast cancer and autism, but also tiny ones you’ve likely never heard of. They operate under the radar easing the miseries of the hungry, homeless and troubled. They put back together the lives of children broken by sexual and domestic violence. This is quiet work. We don’t learn the names of the people helped, nor should we.
Please read the list to the bottom because I believe you will begin to understand the essence of what sportingAcause is about. Hope.
Police Activities League (Torrington)
Regional Food Bank of NENY
Youth Mission Outreach (Poughkeepsie)
Brain Injury Association of MA
American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (MA, NY CT)
Angels of Light (Hudson Valley)
Morris Elementary School PTO (MA)
Barkhamsted Elementary School
Arts Education at Olana Partnership
Bantam Lake Protective Association
Great Barrington Rotary Club
Berkshire Community College Nursing Program
Berkshire South Teen Outreach Nutrition Program
Alzheimer’s Association (MA, NY CT)
Litchfield Community Center
Bethlehem Fuel Bank
Berkshire County ARC
Camp Jewell YMCA
Burlington Community Fund
New Marlborough Cultural Council
Action For Alex
Nick Biancucci Memorial Basketball Courts
Water or People
Cornwall Consolidated School
Berkshire County Kids Place
Connecticut Resource Conservation and Development
Lee High School Scholarship Fund
Dover Plains High School Scholarship Fund
United Way of Dutchess-Orange Counties
Upton Lake Christian School
Falls Village Volunteer Fire Dept.
St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital
People’s Pantry (Great Barrington)
Indian Mountain School
Housatonic Youth Service Bureau
Michael J. Fox Foundation
Northern Dutchess Hospital Foundation
Ferncliff Forest Preserve
Free To Run
Make a Friend Be a Friend
Gilbert School Athletics
Junior Women’s Club of Litchfield Hills
Goshen CT charities
Panichi Family Center for Communications and Learning
Harlem Valley Rail Trail Association
American Legion Post 178
Millerton Fire/Rescue Squad
Salisbury Central School 8th Grade
Right to Dream
Amenia Fire/Rescue Squad
Wassaic Fire Dept
High Watch Recovery Center Scholarship Fund
Litchfield Area Veterans
Running for Rescues
Volunteers in Medicine, Berkshires
Upper Housatonic Heritage Area
Relay for Life- American Cancer Society (MA, NY, CT)
Harwinton Handicap-Accessible Trail Fund
Eagle Santa Toy Fund
Litchfield Parks and Recreation
Berkshire United Way
Kent Food Bank
Special Olympics, MA
Lee, MA High School Cross Country Program
Lenox, MA High School Cross Country Booster Club
Lenox Dale Fire Co.
Litchfield Youth Athletics
Scholarships for Litchfield, Wamogo and Forman Schools
Hartford Marathon Foundation
CT Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (Trail Maintenance)
Making Strides, Litchfield County
Brain Injury Association, NY
Dana Faber Cancer Institute
Miles For Hope Breast Cancer Foundation
Camp Moe Scholarships
Millbrook Early Childhood Education Center
MTM Scholarship Fund
Norfolk Land Trust
Norfolk Volunteer Fire Dept.
Norfolk Rails to Trails
Great Mountain Forest
Matt Herring Foundation
Peach Hill Park
Berkshire Medical Center Programs
Morris Recreation Dept.
The Little Guild of St Francis
Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation
United Nations Association Adopt-A- Future
Great Barrington Land Conservancy
Culinary Institute of America Scholarship Fund
Northwestern Regional School District 7
Sandy Beach Restoration Fund
Bethlehem Food Pantry
CJ First Candle
Sharon Daycare Center
Sharon Recreation Center
St Mary’s School
Pine Plains recreation
Torrington Trails Network
Cancer Care Fund of Litchfield Hills
United Way of Dutchess County
Boy Scout Troop 114, Valatie, NY
Ichabod Crane Central School BackPack Program
Family Services Domestic Violence (Poughkeepsie)
Camp Wa Wa Segowea Scholarships
Walk a Mile in Her Shoes, Berkshire and Litchfield Counties
Prime Time House
Torrington Area Parkinson’s Support Group
National MS Society, MA, NY and CT
Parks and Recreation Wamogo Scholarship Fund
Sandisfield Library and Community Center
Adopt- A – Family
Amenia Fire Co.
Amenia Lion’s Club Scholarship Fund
Ancrum Fire Co.
Susan B. Anthony Project
FISH of NWCT
Community Kitchen of Torrington
Open Door of Winsted
Canaan VFW Scholarship Fund
Taconic Scholarship Fund
Charlie Ormsby Children’s Golf Clinic
Columbia-Greene Community Foundation
Sheffield Kiwanis Club
Fairview Hospital Med-Surg Unit
Boy’s and Girl’s Club, Berkshires
Millbrook Community Pre-School
EPIC Youth Empowerment Program
Grace Latino Outreach Program
Food For Life Pantry
Church Alliance Senior Housing
Harwinton Youth Sports Association
Hearts of the Father Outreach
Immaculate Conception Church of St. Martin of Tours Parish
Isaiah Lamb Fund
Canaan Exchange Club Scholarship Fund
Kara Zinke Emergency Fund
Kent Volunteer Fire Dept.
Knights of Columbus Scholarship Fund
Food Pantries of Woodbury, Watertown and Salisbury
Litchfield Sports Booster Club
Canaan Fire Co.
Maplebrook School Scholarship Fund
Oliver Wolcott Technical High School Scholarship Fund
Help Hope Live Northeast Transplant Fund
Possum Queen Foundation
Salisbury Central School
Salisbury Winter Sports Association
Salisbury Youth Hockey
Sharon Fire Dept.
Region One Athletic Fund
Stockbridge and Lenox Libraries
Torrington Area Families for Autism
St. Anthony of Padau and Our Lady of Grace Churches Scholarship Fund
Litchfield Sports Booster Club
Great Barrington Rotary Club Scholarship Fund
Roeliff Jensen Community Library
Thomas J. Berlinghoff Memorial Fund
Torrington Lion’s Club Scholarship Fund
All Hands Volunteers
Pearson School Playground
Torrington Youth Service Bureau
Hurricane Relief, Virgin Islands
Tanzanian Children’s Fund
Mekele School for the Blind
Northwest United Way
Jane Lloyd Fund
Salisbury Volunteer Ambulance Service
American Cancer Society
Bantam Lake Projects
Helping Hands FILAM Fund
Norfolk Curling Club
Sunday in the County Food Drive
CT Children’s Medical Center
Habitat For Humanity, Dutchess County
NWCT Rod and Gun Club
St. Peter/St. Francis School
Accelerate Brain Cancer Research
CT Brain Cancer Alliance
Musella Foundation for Brain Tumor Research
Special Olympics, CT
Housatonic Valley Regional High School Basketball Programs
Kenneth Krom Scholarship Fund
Mt. Everett High School Booster Club
Sharon Parks and Recreation
Litchfield High School Senior Class
New Hartford Land Trust
Sharon Fire Dept.
John Rice Scholarship Fund
Keri Perotti Scholarship Fund
Hudson River Housing
Corner Food Pantry
Karen DuCotey Fund for Kids
Burlington Parks and Recreation
St Paul’s Children’s Center
Be As You Wear
ALS Therapy Development Institute
Playground Golf Foundation
HVRHS Golf Team
Ryan McElroy Foundation
Lustgarten Foundation (for pancreatic cancer research)
Villa Veritas Foundation
Goshen Stampede Foundation
Premier Cares Foundation
Cerebral Palsy of Ulster County
Local VFW’s and American Legions
Torrington Child Care Center
Friends of Moe
Cornwall Food and Fuel
Falls Village Day Care
Food Banks of Region 1 towns
Torrington Parks and Recreation
Center for Compassion
Sheffield Volunteer Hose Company
Sharon Hospital Bike Rodeo for Kids
Christopher Unsworth Scholarship Foundation
Refugee and Immigration Center for Education and Legal Services
Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation
Guiding Eyes for the Blind
Women’s Support Services
Lake Waramaug Task Force
Washington Volunteer Ambulance
Washington Volunteer Fire Co.
State Police Explorers Post (Litchfield)
Steep Rock Association
Families United in Newtown
Fidelco Guide Dogs
Hospital For Special Care
Bike New York
Bike Walk Connecticut
Community Development Corp of South Berkshire
Cornwall Food and Fuel
Lakeville Pony Club
Church World Service
I hesitate to write this blog. People hate to be told or even advised about what they should do. I know. I’m one of them.
But write it I must, because after two years of searching websites and social media pages for information and writing up over 400 sports-related fundraising events around this Tri-State area, I’ve made some observations and come to some conclusions that you may find helpful.
So here is my list of Dos and Don’ts when you are organizing or promoting your event whether it is sports-related or not.
1 This should be an easy one – Decide on an event name and stick with it. I’ve seen the names of events vary so much across media that they are barely recognizable as the same event. This usually happens if more than one person is involved in promoting the event. Sometimes the name just morphs from year to year.
If there is a word like “Jogfest” in the title, make certain it is always used- it is a key word that readers will use to recognize your event.
Also, you don’t have to tell the whole story in the title. The longest event title on sportingAcause.com is eleven words – too long. Make it descriptive but brief.
2 When posting your event, especially on social media pages, please, please write the date including the year and include the town/city and state in the lead sentence. Many is the time I’ve clicked through three-plus times to find the race is in Nebraska or the golf tournament notice was from 2012. And keep your website information current too. I swear some folks haven’t reviewed their non-profit sites in years!
3 Every event must have a contact- “For more information about XYZ Golf Tournament call/email so-and-so”. But make very, very sure that contact person addresses all inquiries. Because, believe it or not, 10% of the inquiries that I’ve made go unanswered. Let me put that another way – one out of ten times that I seek information about an event, no one gets back to me.
That, my friends, is inexcusable.
4 If you have a successful, established, multi-year event, do not change the date. You will lose loyal patrons. If your event has always been on the third Saturday in July, leave it there, or you will be sorry.
5 And finally (Yay) – If you are planning a new event for your non- profit, good for you! But think seriously about the date . Ideally, you should schedule your event on a date when not much else is going on. For example, do not plan your event during September. Weekends during the 9th month are already overflowing with fundraisers. Before you pick a date, check out sportingAcause.com to get a sense of when the event traffic is lighter.
So there. Had enough instruction for one blog? I thought so.
September is Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month, and there are upcoming Out of the Darkness Walks to Prevent Suicide sponsored by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Last year I attended one of their events, and this is what I found.
Most of the people wore strands of brightly colored beads around their necks. There were white ones and red and gold and orange and silver and green and blue and teal. Each color held specific meaning.
All of these people, nearly 500 of them, had gathered to celebrate the lives of loved ones lost to suicide, and the beads represented the nature of the their loss. White designated the loss of a child, red meant the loss of a spouse, gold a parent , orange a sibling and so on. The beads color-coded their pain.
This was the Out of The Darkness Walk to Prevent Suicide, one of 400 held nationwide by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) to support survivors of suicide and work to end it.
The Walk was billed as a celebration of the lives of those who are gone by those who remain. One of the speakers addressed the seeming conflict of joy amid such pain.
“How can we feel such profound gratitude and such profound sadness at the same time?” she asked. Everyone there seemed to know. There were tears, as people stood at the microphone and explained their color “I am wearing orange because I lost my brother- my best friend”.
“I wear silver today because I lost military- a couple of them”.
“I’m wearing white because I lost my twin sons” -both of them.
Bertha, one of the event organizers, wore nearly every color- father, child and other loved ones- all lost . And she wore green to represent her own struggles with suicide.
Yes there were tears but also smiles and hugs and laughter and camaraderie. And that of course was the answer to the question- that amid that profound sadness, they could feel gratitude because they all had the support of each other- they all understood.
Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States at the rate of 129 people a day.
There will be an Out of the Darkness Walk to Prevent Suicide on Sept. 29th on the Walkway Over the Hudson in Poughkeepsie and one on October 5th at The Common in Pittsfield, MA.
Find details at sportingAcause.com.
Fairview Hospital will sponsor a Bystander CPR clinic Thursday, July 25, 2019 at Lawrence Field in Canaan, CT 06018.
The free clinic is part of Family Fun Night which is part of Canaan Railroad Days.
Along with the Bystander CPR Clinic, there will be food for sale as well as a variety of kid-centric games.
Bystander CPR is the shortened version of the full three hour CPR course.
In five minutes, one can learn the chest compression technique to save someone’s life (the protocol no longer uses mouth to mouth resuscitation).
Medical personnel will be offering this vital instruction from 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm.
For each person who learns Bystander CPR Thursday evening, sportingAcause.com will donate $5 to the Canaan Ambulance Corp, up to 100 people.