Thanks To All!

by Chris Nelson

Hello, everybody!

First, I wanted to say thank you for all of your support with this year’s event. All of you through your help and support made it possible to raise $900 from this year’s event before expenses. I will be sending a check to the Wounded Warrior Project very soon.

I’d also like to share my thoughts on how things went during this year’s event.

We had a great show and had terrific performances by the bands and musicians. Videos of some of these performances should be coming out very soon. I’m told the quality is excellent this year, so I expect to see a few of these on the artist pages sometime in the future. We’ll also have links to these videos from our Facebook page, as well. A big thanks goes out to Tim Dyer of Dyer’s World Video and Chris Hicks and the rest of the crew of Voyager Music. It was like being at a rock concert. I’d also like to say thank you to Dale’s Drum Shop for furnishing us with a drum kit for the bands to use. Tim has already told me how impressed he is with this year’s video sound quality.

I’d like to again thank all of our perfromers this year for what I think was the best show in our three-year history. These folks came out and played free of charge in order to help us get the word out about our wounded service men and women. When you have the time, I urge all of you to go visit the musicians’ web sites and listen to their music. You won’t be disappointed! Links to all their web sites can be found here.

This year, we were able to get a lot of press from some of the local radio and TV stations. That helps us get the word out a little more about what we’re doing, and more importantly, why we’re doing it. I will try to find links to some of these items and post them on our Facebook page. A big thanks to Mike Randazzo for arranging all that for us.

We also had posters that helped us get the word out, so I think we left a bigger impression on the community. Thanks to Major Frank Brown and Sergeant Damian Smith for printing those for us. I think it helped a lot.

While we’re on the subject of publicity, I need to recognize Ric Albano and 33 Dimensions for updating and maintaining our web site. He does a fantastic job keeping up with all of that and I thank him for all of his help.

I really appreciate the help of our booth volunteers this year. Anita Lenker and Rebecca Smith worked the entire four-hour event in the booth selling raffle tickets and wristbands. They also helped with the raffle drawings, too! Outstanding job!

I’d also like to mention that L.B. Smith Ford is going to help us with sending out the thank you letters to all of our contributors. Thank you very much for all of your support – they also were a contributor to this year’s event. you can find a complete list of our contributors on our web site.

I saw lots of cameras pointed at the stage, so I hope any of you who were there taking pictures will please post them to our Facebook page. The more pictures we get, the better we can use them for publicity the next time around. if you have trouble, contact me and we’ll figure something out.

Overall, I think we did good with the amount of time we were given, although things got a little chaotic when the helicopers took off five minutes after Shift Seven finished playing! Hopefully, we can coordinate that a little better with the Army next year. With any luck, we won’t have to worry about a baseball game immediately after the Armed Forces Day event so we’ll have more time. There were so many more acts we could’ve booked if we’d had the time.

We’re just about out of wristbands, so we will need to find something else to sell for next year’s event. T-shirts are one possibility, but without an event date like those we had in 2011. That way, we can sell the remaining shirts during a future event and continue raising more money. The down side to this is we’d have to raise an additional amount of money to produce the t-shirts, which is more overhead. Since we sold about 50 in 2011, we can probably get away with ordering 50 next year. I’m open to suggestions, if anyone has any ideas. If anyone wants to contribute t-shirts for next year’s event, I’m OK with that, too!

I’d like to have something people would be motivated to buy on a whim, thus making more money for the Wounded Warrior Project. Possibly another version of the wrist bands would work, too. They seem to be popular.

Tim Dyer suggested we sell a DVD featuring some of the perfromances as a possible way to raise money. I think this has possibilties. I’d like to know what all of you thnk about it. It’ll cost us approximately $185 for 50 DVDs in shrink-wrapped cases through Disc Makers/CD Baby . I wouldn’t suggest ordering any more than that unless we’re sure we can sell them. this number is manageable.

I’d also like to mention that Rhyne McCormick and Shift Seven contributed CDs as part of the fundraising. I think Shift Seven would have sold some of the ones they contributed if the booth hadn’t been taken down during their set. However, Rhyne sold several of his, so this is another option for raising some extra money for the event that I will discuss with the bands next time around. Additionally, Ticket Fairy played a significant role in promoting the event and facilitating ticket sales.

All in all, this event turned out even better than I expected it to. If you’d like to send me your thoughts, please reply to this message. If you prefer, you can post your comments on our Facebook page for open discussion.

I can’t say it enough, I really appreciate all of your help and support making this event into what it’s become: a fundraising concert to help out our Wounded Warriors! See you next year!

Chris Nelson