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RED BANK: BASIE #GIVING BACK TO VETS

basie-dome-032817-500x375-9159089The domed ceiling of the Count Basie Theatre. Below, Linda and Jay Grunin. 

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“Giving Tuesday,” founded in 2012 by New York City’s 92nd St. YMCA and the United Nations Foundation, was originally a “response to commercialism and consumerism” during the holiday season. It has since turned into an international day of giving.

Next Tuesday, Nov. 28, the nonprofit Count Basie Theatre will join forces with 94.3 The Point and The Jay and Linda Grunin Foundation for a day-long, live broadcast from the Basie to raise funds for the Veterans Tickets Foundation, or Vet Tix.

Vet Tix provides tickets to events which reduce stress, strengthen family bonds, build life-long memories and encourage service members and veterans to stay engaged with local communities and American life.

“We understand the obstacles that many currently serving military and veteran individuals and their families encounter,” said Mike Focareto, CEO, Vet Tix. “Our goal is to alleviate the stressors these families experience and provide an opportunity for growth and reintegration through community events.”

“This outstanding partnership with the Count Basie Theatre will allow us to give back and add even more wonderful memories to our ‘VetTixer’ families in the area.”

Money raised during the radiothon will go towards tickets to Count Basie Theatre events to be distributed to area families through Vet Tix. In addition, the first $25,000 raised will be matched by Toms River’s Jay And Linda Grunin Foundation.

“It is very important that we give back to those who sacrificed so much for our freedom,” said Jeremy Grunin, President, Jay and Linda Grunin Foundation. “Our Foundation actively supports the military community and veterans through our involvement with Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, the Department of Defense’s only tri-service base, and by helping veterans become more engaged in our community through the arts, including the Protectors of Freedom monument in Ocean County dedicated earlier this year.”

“This Giving Tuesday initiative will allow veterans and their families to experience the joy of the arts and feel the gratitude our community has for their service.”

In addition, $1 from every ticket sold on Giving Tuesday will be donated to the New Jersey Run For The Fallen, a 501 (c)(3) organization of runners and support crew whose mission is to run one mile for every New Jersey service member killed in Operation Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom and New Dawn. The 2018 run, which will take place next September, will span from Wildwood to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Holmdel.

“Our region is home to veterans of all conflicts, so it’s important to provide them and their families with opportunities to reap the benefits that come from experiencing the arts,” said Tom Widener, Chairman, Count Basie Theatre Board of Trustees. “Vet Tix’s mission to serve families, create memories and encourage community engagement mirrors our own, and so we’re proud that this Giving Tuesday event will make it easier for soldiers and their families to be part of the Basie.”

The “Giving Tuesday” broadcast from the Basie will kick-off at 5:30am. Listeners will be invited to drop by and give donations in person, or to make donations via theBASIE.org.

“We are looking forward to partnering once again with the Count Basie Theatre on Giving Tuesday,” said Steve Ardolina, Regional Operations Manager for Townsquare Media Group New Jersey, which owns WJLK. “ Vet Tix and NJ Run For The Fallen do such important work, and it’s our honor to help give back to those who gave.”

The live “Giving Tuesday” broadcast will feature performances from students of the Count Basie Theatre Performing Arts Academy’s Rockit! Live and Jazz Arts academies, singer / songwriter Melissa Etheridge (who performs that evening on the Basie stage) and others. For more information on this and all Count Basie Theatre events, contact Jonathan Vena at [email protected] / 732-224-8778 x 107.

Remember: Nothing makes a Red Bank friend happier than to hear "I saw you on Red Bank Green!"
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