Classic Mixer breaks records

Watch the Continuing the Dream video by
Cinecraft Productions (Neil McCormick '70) featuring VASJ students.
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Dear VASJ Community:

You did it again! The Third Annual Vikings Classic Mixer once again surpassed even our very high expectations for support. Not only was it the event of the year in terms of fun, food and friendship, it also broke all records as a fundraiser.

While we're still crunching numbers for a final accounting, it is already clear that the event will net - after all expenses are paid - drum roll, please....

More than $200,000!

Of that amount, the "Continuing the Dream" tuition-assistance drive conducted midway through the evening brought in $135,000. These funds will be used exclusively for direct help to deserving students and their families. Last year, "Continuing the Dream" netted $47,850, which helped 30 students with their tuition costs with an average award of $1,595.

Overall, the Classic Mixer represents 20 percent of VASJ's annual fundraising efforts.

This year's stunning achievement was made possible by a large number of Viking alums and supporters. Presenting sponsor for the event was Joseph Scaminace '71, who donated $25,000. The event was chaired by Mike Romeo '88, who picked up the baton from last year's chairman, Peter Apicella '70.

Pete and his outstanding team last year set a new standard for the event, creating the previous record for a single fundraiser. Mike and his team turned in another stellar performance and a new record.

Current VASJ students were a significant presence at the event as greeters and helpers. Emcees were sophomore Danielle Paus and freshman John Henry Posey. Principal David Csank introduced Coach Babe Kwasniak '94, who in turn presented the members of his 2013 Division IV Championship basketball team.

Board of Advisors Chairman Don Dailey '70 literally set the stage for "Continuing the Dream" by announcing that a group of eight "Dream Makers" had collectively agreed to donate $65,000 if other contributors would raise $35,000, thus creating a $100,000 total.

The Dream Makers were created after Tim Misny '73 said he would match $10,000 if other donors would "make him pay." In short order, others said they would join the effort. Besides Scaminace and Misny, the Dream Makers included John Hocevar '69, Jamie Myers '72, Clark Kellogg '79, Jim Zinkan, Umberto Fedeli '78 and Mike Golic '81.

Bob Mullin '88 got the "bidding" going by joining the Dream Makers on the spot with a pledge of $10,000. Other contributors enthusiastically joined in, either in person or with "designated hitters" announcing their pledges from the floor. Mike Romeo spoke for his 1988 classmate (not to mention Heisman Trophy winner and Super Bowl MVP), Desmond Howard.

The VASJ Board of Advisors pledged $9,000. Greg Lieb '70, a member of last year's Classic Mixer committee and an event sponsor this year, pledged an additional $5,000.

In addition to Scaminace and Lieb, sponsors of the event included Cinecraft Productions, led by Neil McCormick '70, who also was a Continuing the Dream contributor, along with Cleveland Magazine, Agents Choice, Don and Mary Jo Dailey, Euclid Hospital, Morgan Stanley, PCS, the St. Joseph Class of '88, Gerard Stadler '69 and committee member Sue Eline-White.

Needless to say, we are deeply grateful to everyone who supported us - our sponsors, "Dream Makers" and other donors. Their generosity enables more students to have the blessing of a VASJ education while we also maintain, improve and enhance their experience at our school.

It was great to see all of you who were able to attend. If you missed it, see you next year!

God bless you all.

Richard Osborne '69
VASJ President