My co-chairs Jason Polan, Heather White, President Amber Danahey and the board of Westfield on Weekends (WOW) wish to acknowledge those businesses, organizations and individuals, whose financial support made the magic happen at PumpkinFest this past weekend.
Over the years, it has been surprising to me to realize that some folks think that WOW events like PumpkinFest and the upcoming DecemberFest happenings are paid for by the City with taxpayers’ dollars. That is not the case. Indeed, while we are ever indebted to our government for providing help and in-kind assistance, as a not-for-profit 501 (c) (3) WOW must raise the monies that fund all the programs and activities that we produce throughout every year.
Fundraising and grantsmanship occupy much of our time and once again, for PumpkinFest, we witnessed the generosity of area and businesses, organizations and individuals who helped us meet the huge production costs. We can never thank or recognize folks who help make Westfield the liveable community that it is enough. Permit me some acknowledgements.
First, we must thank our premium sponsor, Baystate Health and Baystate Noble Hospital and our other major sponsors: The Varelas Family from the Good Table, Staples, Polish National Credit Union and C & S Wholesale Grocers. They are much appreciated.
For PumpkinFest, we were fortunate to receive grants from the Future Fund of Westfield Bank, Shurtleff Children’s Services, Inc. and the Westfield Cultural Council, a local program of the Massachusetts Cultural Council.
The 780 pumpkins that were distributed free of charge were provided with a major donation from the Varelas Family from the Good Table and other financial support from George’s Jewelers; Roger Butler Insurance Agency, Inc.; Bates Fullum Insurance Agency; Rosewood Home & Gifts and Witalisz & Associates Real Estate. Other Pumpkin Carving donors included Mayor Brian Sullivan; Committee to Elect Jim Adams City Councilor at Large; Ward 1 City Councilor Mary Ann Babinski; Betts Plumbing & Heating Supply; City Councilor at Large Brent Bean; City Councilor at Large John Beltrandi; Greater Westfield Boys and Girls Club; Ward 4 City Councilor Mike Burns; Ward 2 City Councilor Ralph Figy; City Councilor at Large Dave Flaherty; City Councilor at Large Cindy Harris; Committee to Elect Mike McCabe Mayor; Ward 6 City Councilor Bill Onyski; School Committee Member Bo Sullivan; Committee to Elect Richard Sullivan City Councilor at Large; State Senator Don Humason; Committee to Elect Matt Van Heynigen City Councilor at Large; and State Representative John Velis.
The following also supported the Pumpkin Runway: Roger Butler Insurance Agency, Inc.; Bates Fullum Insurance Agency; Committee to Elect Jim Adams City Councilor at Large; Ward 1 City Councilor Mary Ann Babinski; City Councilor at Large John Beltrandi; City Councilor at Large Cindy Harris and Witalisz & Associates Real Estate.
In kind assistance was also received from the Westfield G & E; ATC Sound & Audio; Jerome’s Party Plus; The Kotowitz Family and Shaker Farms Country Club; The Sardinha Family and Dunkin’ Donuts; Six Flags; The Balboni Family and Wishing Well Alpacas; Soxcessful; Walmart of Westfield and the Westfield News.
PumpkinFest 2019 was truly an incredible event, thanks to many hard-working volunteers, whose valuable time, energy and effort is priceless. Last night’s “Letter to the Editor” in the Westfield News detailed several individuals, who were essential in its planning and execution. I refer you there and ask that you read it to learn how a huge production like PumpkinFest is mounted.
Meanwhile, I want you to know that should you wish to help sustain the programs and activities of WOW, including PumpkinFest, DecemberFest, MusicFest and all the courses, workshops and event for adults and children at WOW’s Westfield Creative Arts Center (CAC), you may become a WOW member, give a donation by visiting westfieldonweekends.com or visiting CAC at 105 Elm Street.
Again, many thanks our funders and all those who attended PumpkinFest and see you in December!!!
Bob Plasse WOW Vice President of Programming/ PumpkinFest Co-chair