Well, I guess I’ll start by fixing my giant mistake first. I am a little dyslexic and last year I transposed the call letters for the radio station simulcasting our show in my Beacon letters… continually I might add. Quite naturally Marnita took the information from my letters and reprinted it again this year. God love my friend, Tom just never said anything to me until Monday and then just quietly mentioned it. OMG; my sincere apologies to the owners and manager Tom Swank of WNKO. I apologize for not catching my mistake and not fixing it sooner. Oop’s, I’m not perfect and it is a disability.
Well Marnita was out cleaning up both parks at 6:30 a.m. on Saturday, the 3rd after all hell had broken loose. That is dedication and something I’ve never done. When she got to Fairfield Beach only one other volunteer soul was out there with her and he had it almost done. I hear he does it every year. Unfortunately, she did not get his name. We would like to know who you are, sir. Would you please call the Beacon office at 928-5541. Thank you sir, for giving your time to your community. Nothing is more precious then that.
Another couple, who are part of the park VIP program (that’s Volunteers in the Park), were cleaning up North Shore at the same time. Their names are Bob and Ruby Sillin. Here is my invitation to all three of you. You are invited to have dinner at my home next year and then be ferried out to the barge to have a front row seat for the fireworks. I’m told it’s the best seat on the lake. Call The Beacon for my number; I would like to meet you all as soon as possible. You can take me up on the invitation or not, but it’s there if you want it. Thank you for your community service.
Only one family got one of our hats to collect donations on the night of the fireworks. They were having a party at their home on North Bank and thought they could collect some donations. They brought the sealed hat back on Monday. They follow direction well. Ralph tells me they had about 70 or so people in their yard. Pat, (Ralph’s wife) is the daughter of Jean Arter (the greatest t-shirt sales person there ever was among other things) and the sister of Bob Arter who started the night boat parade. In other words, they are a family of community leaders who raised $191 for BLASST and you should be proud to know them.
As many of you know, I have always dedicated our show to someone. This year was no different, but I am doing it after the show because I wasn’t the front person. This year’s show was dedicated to Henry Bell who we just lost on May 29th. He was a generous contributor to BLASST year after year. He and Allen shared their boat on the Tour of Homes some years back and had a great time with all the visitors. He is missed by many.
The “word” is a powerful thing. The words ”THANK YOU” can do wonders for overworked and under appreciated people who need to hear it in the worst possible way. Words are free and easy to say; yet for some reason THANK YOU doesn’t come out of people’s mouths nearly enough. God forbid people should take the time to put pen to paper and actually write a thank you note. This is the computer age and many of us have e-mail; it can’t get any simpler then that. So let me give you a list of people you might thank for the most outrageous, outstanding, put Red White and Boom to shame show that was ever launched over Buckeye Lake. In no particular order, but must be thanked: Tim Waln, (Regional Parks Manager), and his personal crew; Marnita Swickard (cochair of BLASST); Charlie Prince (owner and editor of the Beacon); USCG Auxiliary (always helpful); Walnut Township Fire Marshall Billy Phillips; Millersport Fire Department, Licking Township Fire Company, Richland Township Fire; Fairfield County Dive Team; Fairfield and Licking county EMA; Thorn Township Fire; and Dean Bolton. Please send your thank you’s to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail them to 13284 West Bank Dr. Millersport Ohio, 43046 and I will see that they get to the proper place.
Combine them all into to one note if you have to and I will make copies and pass them out. Do I need to say here that hundreds of letters should be arriving. People around this lake have got to start coming to the table with something before its too late. You may think this is a given, a done deal, an always and forever fireworks show, but you’re wrong. Please hear me out. I’m not talking about those of you who sent in a donation or bought a t-shirt. However, out of all those checks, just 23 included a note and two of those were critical. I am talking about the thousands who enjoy a fantastic fireworks show every year, but won’t contribute a dime to the effort or even buy a t-shirt.
Just so you know, I am the only person handling the donation checks; It’s always been that way, it always will be. I also handle the hats used to collect cash donatons. Unfortunately, most of them sit in my garage unused year after year. Thanks again Sharon Casto for the great job you did on those hats. I wish people were standing in line to sign them out.
Now, I do want to thank the Cook Family, Merv Bartholow and Eddie Hulls for their personal phone calls thanking me for my work and telling me how great they thought the show was. It truly meant the world to me. Again, it’s the simple things that can get you through a very tough day. Marnita and I like to be thanked. It’s our pay at the end of a volunteer day.