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Building Community Since 2003

By: Bob Plasse, President

Twenty Years?! Who would believe that WOW is celebrating a two-decade parade of accomplishments. It is certainly appropriate for me as President to begin a series of newsletter remembrances, and I hope you enjoy it!

WOW!!!! That sums it up!!!   Westfield on Weekends has produced quality community programming since 2003 and has grown into a vital non-profit that has weathered the shifts and vagaries of a volunteer organization and the challenging times we have faced throughout the years – be they lacking funding or the COVID crisis.

WOW began in 2003 when representatives of several non-profit organizations, businesses, civic leaders, and volunteers, including yours truly, were brought together to produce a fall Arts on the Green Festival on Westfield’s Park Square.

 Most of that initial committee has moved on or away, and I have even forgotten a few with senior apologies. Cheers to Gerry Tracy, Chris Lindquist, Michelle Iglesias, Kathi Palmer, Paul Lischetti, Chris Dunphy, Kate Pighetti, and someone named Kevin. They all believed that a city is only as good as the community you make and the opportunities you create for folks to celebrate their similarities and differences.

Our new organization had a simple concept:  to produce community events for Westfield in partnership with other community groups under the banner of one theme that could be used for joint marketing. Not being a non-profit organization at the time, it became associated as an umbrella organization of The City of Westfield’s Community Development Corporation (CDC). The CDC helped WOW to produce its events and oversaw its financial budget. At the same time, WOW worked to fulfill the requirements needed to become its own not-for-profit.

WOW’s first project happened in December 2003, when it produced a calendar of holiday events named Dickens Days. Organizations like the Westfield Athenaeum and the Amelia Park Children’s Museum participated, having their own events and those created by WOW.   We were off and running!!!

So many people to thank and events to remember! I am overwhelmed, but in the months to come, I plan to do just that. Stay tuned!!!

And indeed, if you donate during this anniversary year, we would be most appreciative!

WOW’s 10TH ANNIVERSARY logo was created by our longtime graphic designer, Tara Vermette of Tru Blu Grafix, based on the original design from TSM Design of Springfield. The first attempts at a logo in our first years did not have a trapezoidal box, and they had colored blocks appearing before the “W.” The blocks were to be representative of a city in motion. They might be people, buildings, crayons for creativity - anything the viewer might connect with fun and city life. We moved the “W’ to the front of the blocks. (In truth, for years, folks often asked me what the “W” and colored blocks meant!) We thought it was time to envision the blocks as specific objects for our tenth anniversary. We placed fireworks within a trapezoid to represent WOW’s uniqueness.

Tara created what is our current logo in 2019. This logo capitalizes on the fact that most people refer to Westfield on Weekends as WOW. For our twentieth celebration, we simply have added a band to the burst of fireworks, noting our history.

Our Logo through the years

Current WOW logo – Created in 2019 with 20th Anniversary Banner
10 Year Anniversary Logo
Original Logos Created in 2003
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