Being Bruce -: March 2010

Saturday, March 27, 2010

In Honor of Pepper

Our wonderful friend Pepper passed away this week. She will always have part of my heart and be part of who I am. I learned much from her and am entirely grateful for the nine and a half years she was part of our family.

Rest easy, Pepper. We love you.

NBCC Celebrates Terry Grillo 3-26-2010

On outgoing North Brunswick Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Terry Grillo's last day on the job, community and chamber members, staff and family gathered for celebration of her work with the chambers.

Leland Police Chief Timothy Jayne.

Chamber members Alice Razzano and Marge Brown.

New Executive Director (and former board member) Dana Fisher, chamber member Jennifer Henthorn of BB&T Bank, and board member Connie Reeves of Azalea Plaza.

"Thanks for great service, Terry, you done awesome!"

Friday, March 26, 2010

My Adventure with Dancing with the Brunswick Stars - Journal Entry 1

Well, folks. I'm on another adventure. I'm not climbing mountains or jumping out of planes or doing the Cannonball Run (do they still do that?), but I'm taking on a challenge for a good cause.

This past week I was invited to participate in the 3rd Annual Dancing with the Brunswick Stars!

(Below is a shot of me dancing with my favorite partner in the NBCC offices at a ribbon cutting recently.)

Here's the deal. Brunswick Community College is a fast-growing institution smack in the middle of Brunswick County with satellite campuses in Southport, Leland, and Calabash. They are pairing up a bunch (I don't know how many, probably around 20?) people who live and work and are known in the county for whatever reasons (I'm assuming good ones?) with professional dance instructors to compete in early August.

Why is BCC holding the event? Well, to raise scholarship money. "Oh," you say, "another fund-raiser." And the answer is, "Well, yeah, and last year they raised more than $330,000 and provided more than 200 scholarships!"

Wow! That's called making a difference. So I'm pumped and proud to be asked. The money is raised, by the way, by contributions in support of the dancers and in ticket sales to the event. Lots of promotion from WECT TV and Brunswick County press, too.

I got a call from Susan Lawing of the BCC Development office on Thursday asking if I'd be willing to participate. I was frankly concerned about the time commitment involved, but reassured that it wouldn't be too bad. This event isn't like the TV show where participants essentially suspend everything else in their lives to practice every day for weeks and learn new dances every week. There's only one 90 second dance and we get three months to learn it. The expectation is one practice session a week during May and June, twice a week in July and then the actual event is August 6th. So that's not too bad. I checked with Marge and we agreed it would be fun and a good thing to do for the community.

Plus, I really love to dance. I'm not talented and I've had only a couple of lessons in my whole life, but in high school and college I was a dancing fool. The difference between now and then is now I don't dance so often. So I may not be very good, but I'm certainly enthusiastic.

So I also decided it might be fun to keep a journal of this experience, from start to finish - which I'm already visualizing my instructor partner and I, whoever she is, winning easily!! (There are some categories of awards for the actual dancing, but the biggest win is to the instructor-amateur team that garners the most financial support - as in, who raises the most money!). I'll take some photos and maybe some videos, too, to post in this blog/journal.

I wondered how Susan Lawing got my name but had a suspicion because (recently) former NBCC Executive Director Terry Grillo made a comment at a Business After Hours a month or so that I'd be a good candidate for Dancing with the Brunswick Stars and I just laughed it off. So I asked Susan and she said indeed it was Terry and a couple of other people. I called Terry at the chamber and asked Terri Andress, who answered the phone to tell Terry I wanted to talk to "Grillo, now!" And then when she answered we laughed about it.

Turns out my nomination isn't all that big a deal since they called from BCC needing a male and wanting some representation from the northern part of the county, so I've got to not get too swelled up about being asked - I fit the demographic, that's all. But I do like to dance.

The next day I got a call from Linda Boretti who's coordinating the event. Linda told me we're having a kick-off luncheon on April 12th to introduce the "Stars" and their instructors, who will meet for the first time. The instructors are key to this whole thing of course, and they generously donate their time and effort for those three months in support of this fund raiser.

So I don't know who my instructor is, other than she'll be from around the Leland/Wilmington area so travel time to practice shouldn't be an issue. Whoever you are, thanks in advance for what you're doing for the the students in Brunswick County and the community. I promise I'll work hard and be positive. (And, oh yeah, BTW, did you read I intend for us to win?)

Here's a shot from last year's competition when they awarded a $330,000+ check to BCC President Dr. Steven Greiner.

And here's a link to an article in the South Brunswick Magazine about last year's Dancing with the Brunswick Stars.

So I'll keep you posted on this. Look for more journal entries. Probably the next one will be after the April 12th luncheon.

- Brown out.

Wilmington Twestival 2010

We had a great crowd at Wilmington Twestival 2010 at The River Room on South Water Street in Wilmington, NC. I'll be adding to this blog post over the next few days, but wanted to get my images and videos out as soon as possible. Enjoy! And thanks for all who came, who participated and who donated! See you again next for Wilmington Twestival 2011!!