Y Goes Country for the Kids
The Community YMCA held its annual benefit to raise money for the Y's Strong Kids Campaign.
With guests donning their best cowboy hats and boots and sporting a rootin' tootin' motivation to help area children, the Community YMCA held its annual benefit in Red Bank Saturday to support its Strong Kids Campaign.
The theme of the night: Goin' Country for Kids.
In the last year alone, Andrea Plaza, the Y's vice president of communications and collaboration, said, the Community YMCA has provided approximately $1.2 million in program benefits to 3,000 families and children in Monmouth County in need of assistance. While the Y's flagship center is located right in Red Bank, Plaza said the Strong Kids Campaign seeks to help as many as it can.
"There's need in every community, including Red Bank," Plaza, decked out in her cowgirl best, said Saturday night at the benefit's reception in Buona Sera. "No one is turned away for an inability to pay."
The Saturday event also included a concert at the Count Basie Theatre, featuring Little Silver resident Greg Trooper who opened for one of country music's most notable stars, Clint Black, with a portion of the proceeds being donated directly to the Y, according to a release. The event also featured a silent auction with several exciting items to bid on, including an acoustic guitar signed by Jon Bon Jovi.
The money raised at the event will help fund a number of programs, Plaza said, including free or reduced memberships, child care, summer camps, and even programs like the third grade swim program, which teaches all Red Bank third graders how to swim.
The event also was an opportunity for the Y to honor one of their own. Each year the Community YMCA presents its distinguished service award to a community member who positively influences their community. This year the Y honored Tim Hogan, a member of the Y's board since 2002 and chairman from 2007 to 2011. Hogan, the regional president of Riverview Medical Center and Bayshore Community Hospital, was presented with an award on stage at the Basie during Black's concert.
"We could think of no one more deserving of the recognition," Plaza said.