200-plus attend gala with proceeds supporting 15 agencies in the county
LYNDONVILLE – The community came together in a big way Sunday night to show their support for United Way of Orleans County.
“We are blessed to have such fantastic community support,” said Dean Bellack, director of United Way. “We are especially fortunate to have Matt Holland (grant writer) and Nyla Gaylord (fundraiser) and our exceptional board of directors.”
The second annual gala brought more than 200 people to White Birch Golf Course for the event which featured a gourmet buffet dinner, Las Vegas entertainer Jimmy Mazz, a silent auction and opportunities to win prizes.
United Way’s board chair Jim Punch welcomed guests and issued a plea for everyone to consider making a donation to the organization. All money donated stays in Orleans County to provide food for those in need, counseling, child care and many other services from the 15 agencies that receive United Way funding.
Bellack also urged support for a new endowment fund which United Way has started with $62,000 in gifts. Punch said their goal was to reach $100,000 from Sunday’s gala, which they will use to help those in the community.
Punch also praised Bellack for bringing grant writing to United Way, an endeavor which has resulted in the county receiving grants of more than $600,000 during the past year, with several more soon to be announced. This doesn’t include the $450,000 grant written by Nyla Gaylord to fund a grant writer for the county and an additional staff person at United Way.
Board member Lynn Tyler was presented a certificate of appreciation for his support of United Way, by chairing committees, hosting meetings and bringing his personal friend Jimmy Mazz to entertain. Mazz has been an entertainer for 40 years in Atlantic City and Las Vegas, 16 of them full time. He has performed his many themed-shows at the Golden Nugget and Caesar’s Palace. The theme of Sunday’s show was “Laughter and Legends” and had the audience laughing, clapping and singing along.
United Way is still striving to reach its 2022 goal, and have just surpassed 70 percent. Donations may be made by credit card, Cash App, Text to Give, Venmo or by writing a check to United Way of Orleans County, P.O. Box 188, Medina.