|At the VIP pre-show party. In attendance (foreground hand on chin) is Art Zulick who was one of the candidates of the “destined to be doomed” judge’s race.|
|Bob Dorough’s set with an all-star cast of back-up singers.|
In short, the live show was awesome. Each act was electrifying, and were ready to bring the house down at any given second.
They were initially worried about the weather and attendance, yet it was BEYOND standing room only. A success past anything the planners had conceived.
State Rep. Kelly Lewis handed out citations (the good kind) to all of the sponsors who made “The Reasons for Christmas Project” possible. (Tonight’s performance was courtesy of Aventis Pasteur).
It was founded as a minority-owned establishment, back in a time where Blacks and Jews weren’t welcome anywhere else in the Poconos (why anyone would want to be Black or a Jew in the 50’s is beyond me.). It became a non-smoking facility after the Judge’s wife, Odetta, passed away from lung cancer.
The Judge’s acceptance speech, which ended with “I accepted you, and you all accepted me”, drew the crowd to a standing ovation.
The place is gorgeous, the food was incredible, and I would recommend The Hillside Inn to anyone. In fact we have their card and plan to use them for our daughter’s graduation party next year.
|The infamous Jon Jorgenson (who usually out-dresses me at lunch) with his youngest son, Max|
|State Rep Kelly Lewis, Moi, and Bobby Syvarth, fellow Brooklynite whose song “A Little Prayer” is what inspired “The Reasons for Christmas Project”.
Bobby: “Dude, I think I blinked. Maybe you should get another shot.”
As good as everyone tried to be, a zinger or two about our infamous District Attorney/Judge-elect/Outlaw slipping out was inevitable.
“When I was a kid, [name omitted], used to sneak me in to the Deer Head Inn to see (Jazz legend) Johnny Coates play… fortunately he was never arrested for taking a minor in to a concert”.
One person suggested security keep an eye on the parking lot to make sure our cars weren’t being keyed. :0)
Of course the surprise at the end was presenting Bob Dorough with a special citation for being “one of the Poconos’ most treasured residents”, before he had a chance to leave, Vickie Doney took the stage and led the crowd to sing “Happy Birthday” (tomorrow is his 80th birthday… I swear to God, he looks so good, I wouldn’t be surprised if he lives to 150.) and was presented with a huge birthday cake.
Bob Dorough is SO nice. At the pre-show party, he came right up to Carole and me (at a point where we didn’t know a soul and felt incredibly uncomfortable), introduced himself and struck up a conversation with us.
Lois Heckman had me stand up and take a bow in front of the crowd for my volunteering my services to the site. Rep. Lewis assured me later “Don’t worry, we wont let everything you’ve done ruin your infamous underground reputation on the web” *winks*
How could he POSSIBLY KNOW??? :0)
Emcee Lois Heckman drove in the point of the project onstage: “You know, this isn’t about political parties, or colors, or religions. This is all about a community coming together.”
Amen. (uhm, I mean “Aperson”?)
I have a lot of photoshopping and processing ahead of me to get the photos of the live show on the Reasons for Christmas website.
Fortunately, David Kidwell (a REAL photographer) was on hand, and hopefully he can let me use whatever photos he doesn’t sell to the paper.
|Activist and high-energy emcee of the night, Lois Heckman, talking to the news crew. Not only is she the head of Monroe County Women’s Resources, but a board member of PATH… and really the glue holding us all together. If you want something done… you get Lois (does she EVER get tired???)||“Goddamn it, will you stop following me around with that camera and asking me if I’m singing ‘Layla’ tonight???”
Kent Heckman (not Eric Clapton), owner of Red Rock Recording Studio, enjoying a piece of Bob Dorough’s birthday cake at the end of the show.