Wednesday, May 30, 2012

United Way bringing in world renowned Broadway stars

United Way of Lake County is bringing in world class entertainers to the Mentor Fine Arts Center on Saturday, July 14 for “Broadway & Beyond” to raise money for the nonprofit organization’s 2012 campaign.

Among the night’s performers is CiarĂ¡n Sheehan, who has starred in the role of the Phantom in over 1,000 performances of “The Phantom of the Opera.” Sheehan, who was born and raised in Dublin, Ireland, has also performed in “Les Miserables,” has four sold out performances at the world-famous Carnegie Hall, has appeared in three PBS specials and has a strong Cleveland area following for his frequent performances with the Cleveland Orchestra.

Sheehan will sing popular Broadway and Irish songs during his performance, which The New York Daily News describes as “glorious” and that Sheehan “brings a rich understanding and depth to familiar melodies.” Hollywood Variety says Sheehan “has the kind of soaring stage voice from which indelible Broadway moments are made…the best yet."

Performing alongside Sheehan will be Sarah Pfisterer, who hails from the East Coast and has also played the role of Christine Daae in more than 1,000 performances of “The Phantom of the Opera” on Broadway and across the country. She has also performed in “Show Boat,” “Meet Me in St. Louis,” “Beauty and the Beast” and “The Sound of Music” among many other Broadways. She has also had appearances on The Today Show and The Rosie O’Donnell Show.

Other performances will come from Heather Martin Bixler, a violinist from Wisconsin and the Murphy Irish Dancers who just placed fourth in a world dance competition hosted in Ireland.

“This is a very rare opportunity for people in the Northeast Ohio region to witness some world class entertainers perform in their own backyard,” said Ray Somich, WELW personality and owner of Spirit Media, who will also serve as the event’s emcee. “At the same time, it’s also a great way to raise money for those in need here in Lake County.”

The performances will start at 7 p.m. Tickets for the fundraiser are $40 or $100 for the VIP experience, which includes a Sheehan autographed CD, backstage access and refreshments and appetizers following the show. The VIP tickets are limited to 100 tickets. Proceeds will benefit United Way of Lake County.

To purchase tickets go to or call 1.866.967.8167. Tickets can also be purchased by clicking here.
All money raised during the 2012 United Way of Lake County campaign benefits programs that focus on senior citizens, health and human Services, children and families and basic needs.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Day of Caring update


Looks like everyone was excited about Day of Caring. This morning, we sent out a list of 110 projects to 45 companies and so far, 68 of them have been adopted in just a few short hours.

Last year, only 66 projects were adopted over the course of a month. There's still plenty of projects to choose from so if you and/or your company would like to see the remaining list of projects, please contact Nick Carrabine at or 440.639.1131.

Thanks to everyone who is already participating!

Friday, May 25, 2012

UWLC wraps up its 2012 Feed Lake County campaign

United Way of Lake County wrapped up its 2012 Feed Lake County Campaign Thursday night with an awards reception.

The ceremony took place at the organization's Mentor office, 9285 Progress Parkway and recognition was given to businesses, organizations and individuals who went above and beyond during the annual food drive.

The Feed Lake County Campaign began on March 2 and raised more than 45,100 pounds of food and $62,000 in cash donations. The cash donations will be used to purchase more food throughout the year.

The Feed Lake County Campaign showcased many highlights including a food construction competition out of canned goods between Avery Dennison, Winter Equipment and Marous Brothers Construction at the Great Lakes Mall.

Other highlights from the Feed Lake County Campaign included:

*    Distributing 712 hams to food pantries the week before Easter.
*    Distributing 45,188 pounds of food to 53 food pantries on April 24, with the help from volunteers from Winter Equipment.
*    Mentor High School donating more than 10,311 pounds of food, which was the highest food drive during the campaign.
*    First Energy Perry Nuclear Facility donated $20,588 which was the largest cash donation during the campaign
*    In total, there were more than 60 food drives conducted during the campaign.

In addition to the highlights, the following businesses, organizations and individuals received the below awards:

Outstanding Social Service Agency: YMCA Central
Outstanding Company Award: Workplace Media
Outstanding Continuing Effort: Parker Hannifin
Outstanding Service Club Award: Willoughby Rotary
Outstanding Government Agency: Willoughby Municipal Court
Outstanding High School: Mentor High School
Outstanding Middle School: Ridge Middle School
Outstanding Elementary School: Dale R. Rice Elementary
Outstanding Special Event: Great Lakes Mall, Avery Dennison, Marous Brothers, Winter Equipment, MC Sign, Meister Media.
Outstanding Gift-in-Kind Awards: Great Lakes Mall, Polychem, Office Max, Salvation Army Citadel
Outstanding Volunteers: Willoughby Explorers, Mentor High School Football Team, MC Sign, DeNora Tech, Winter Equipment, Interlake Stamping, Plumbers Local 55, Harvey High School, Holden Arboretum, Lake County Council on Aging, Faith Tomsick, Avery Dennison, Erika Thiedemann, Trent Dlugos, Teen Challenge, Lake House.
1,000 Club Award: City of Mentor Firefighters, Meister Media, Orchard Hollow Elementary, Avery Dennison, Marous Brothers, Winter Equipment, MC Sign, Workplace Media.
Above & Beyond Award: MC Sign
Bob Sauer Award: First Energy Corporation
Clem Urbanski Award: Winter Equipment

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Volunteers still needed for Day of Caring

We are looking for more companies or organizations to sign up to volunteer for our 20th Annual Day of Caring which is Wednesday, June 20.

How does Day of Caring work?

o    Non-profit organizations submit one-day projects on behalf of clients, people in need and/or organizations with limited resources.

o    Area companies, schools, service clubs and other interested individuals volunteer to "adopt" a project.

o    Agencies and organizations collaborate to procure supplies needed for successful completion of the project. United Way of Lake County is not responsible for supplying materials or supplies for projects.

Projects may be large or small in scale and may involve activities such as landscaping, painting or cleaning. Others may involve social activities such as an outing for nursing home residents, an ice cream social with seniors or a picnic for members of a parenting support group.

Day of Caring offers great benefits for companies and individuals and provides corporate team-building opportunities where you'll see immediate results, develop group work skills, develop camaraderie and friendly competition but more importantly, Day of Caring offers the chance to give back to the community in a tangible way.

If you or your business/organization would like to volunteer for Day of Caring, please contact Rich Thiedemann at 440.639.1153 or The deadline for businesses to volunteer is THIS Friday.

Next week we will allow businesses to pick and choose which projects they'd like to adopt (First come, First served). It's encouraged that businesses visit the project sites they adopt before hand to make sure your group is capable of completing the project and to know what materials are needed.