I didn’t necessarily want to have a holiday party. For some reason I am a little uncomfortable with all the ho ho ho’ing. But I knew I wanted to go to Benjamin’s Steakhouse. I had been hearing great things about the place, and it was on my list to go try it. So I decided to make a party for my most loyal fans and friends and chose to host it at Benjamin Steakhouse Westchester. Who could resist a holiday party at a trendy steakhouse and of course there would need to be a fabulous swag bag.
The response was unbelievable. How many events have I had over the years where I felt like I had to really work hard to get people to come? Not this event! Everyone I asked to attend inquired if they could bring a spouse, friend, client, etc. I said maybe, not for this event but please bring them next time.
I went with my PR girl extraordinaire Kris Ruby of Ruby Media Group to the Christmas Tree Shoppe on a Sunday in December.
We were on the hunt for orange. Note to self- visit stores in October for orange. December is all red, green, silver and gold. We loaded the cart with all kinds of decorative items to set the mood. I was sort of kind of getting into it. But don’t tell anyone, I am all about the bah humbug except of course for the presents.
I asked some of my favorite stores to help me with my swag bag. I sent a letter to each and everyone of them if they could send 26 of something. I have to say the response was overwhelmingly generous. There were gift cards from LV2BFit, Paulo’s and The Bar Method in Ryebrook, a necklace from Jewels for a Cause,stacking bangle bracelets from Amy Fine, a romance novel by Carly Phillips, Texting mittens from April Marin, ice packs from Dr. David Bank from The Center for Dermatology, coffee mugs from Ruby Media Group, chocolates and gift cards from Woodrow Jewelers, The Skin Regime book, The Real Men Calendar, W2W magazine, robins cookies from the Thanktank, lip gloss from Alexa Persico, and Aroma Essentials from Arbonne even Neiman Marcus was in on the bag with perfume samples galore.
Then tragedy struck in Newtown, Connecticut at the Sandy Hook Elementary at School and I thought I want to help! But how?
I was glued to the television- those beautiful innocent faces splashed across the screen.
Naturally, I was also glued to twitter.
On Sunday, Ann Curry tweeted, “Imagine if all of us committed to 20 mitvahs/acts of kindness to honor each child lost in Newtown. I’m in. If you are RT #20Acts,” Curry’s original goal of completing 20 acts of kindness has since grown to “26 Acts of Kindness” in tribute to the 20 children killed and six adults murdered on Friday at Sandy Hook Elementary. Twitter has been documenting their good deeds with the hashtag #26acts.
Since sending her tweet, Curry’s Twitter page has been flooded with responses from those who have participated in “26 Acts of Kindness.”
I immediately wanted to change the holiday dinner to something that would give back to the community in wake of what happened.
My Holiday party became the 26 Acts of Kindness Dinner- Stacyknows & Benjamin Steakhouse Commemorate Sandy Hook Victims.
The next thing I new Ann Curry was attending our candlelight vigil.
I am thankful that we could come together as women and as mothers to commemorate such a terrible loss. When I heard about Ann Curry’s social media campaign #26 Acts of Kindness, I knew this was a great opportunity to pay it forward and keep the campaign moving to help others and raise money for the victims.
Benjamin Steakhouse Westchester donated 26 meals to the family members of the victims lost. All proceeds from the evening were donated to The Sandy Hook School Support Fund. $1,828 was raised in donations for The Sandy Hook School Support Fund at the dinner. The donations were presented to honorary guest Robert Merola, Legislative Council Member of Newtown, CT.
It was one of the most incredible evenings of my life. Seeing all 26 Women come together and read aloud their act of kindness, not to mention having Ann Curry show up in person to hear the act of kindness in the vigil ceremony, or seeing Benjamin Steakhouse give 26 dinners to the families who lost a loved on in this tragedy. I was overwhelmed with joy and to be part of such a miraculous evening. I want to especially thank Benjamin Steakhouse Westchester, who it was an absolute pleasure working with on this event and everyone raved about the food, PR girl Kris Ruby of Ruby Media who switched gears 24 hours before my event and flawlessly executed an entirely new event and got media there to capture this night, my git bag sponsors and of course to all 26 women in which this event would not have been possible without you. I would also like to say special thanks to Bob Merola of Newtown, CT who came out during such a tough time to receive the donations and be part of the vigil, and thank you to New York State Senator Greg Ball for your support of this evening.
To watch the full clip on Brian Williams Rock Center, click here: