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Community Activities

You’re almost as likely to find Dickie V on the streets of his hometown as you would behind the microphone during hoops season! Learn about Dickie V’s latest activities—from a scholarship event with the Boys and Girls Club to a fundraiser in downtown Lakewood Ranch, there is never a dull moment when Dickie V’s around Sarasota!

St. Armand's Tree Lighting Ceremony

altHad a great time spending Friday night in beautiful St. Armands Circle where they had the official tree lighting ceremony.

I was joined by my wife and three grandkids for a terrific Italian dinner at Le Colonne Restaurant and then we joined in all the holiday festivities, which included carolers, the lighting of the Christmas tree, and of course, a visit from Santa Claus.

My grandkids got a thrill sitting on Santa's lap and telling him everything they wantd for the Christmas. We had a super time on one of my days off...

For more photos from this ceremony CLICK HERE.

Boys and Girls Club Hometown Hero Award

altI was honored to be selected at the Boys and Girls Clubs of Sarasota County Kids Night Out Gala as a recipient of the Hometown Hero Award. It was a special evening at the Ritz-Carlton in Sarasota on Nov. 8th.

I have always respected the work done by the Boys and Girls Club organizations, it is truly a remarkable place where youngsters can grow, develop, and create friendships and skills that will last them a lifetime.

The evening featured two greats - one in athletics and one in the entertainment world.

Read more: Boys and Girls Club Hometown Hero Award

Payton Wright Pediatric Cancer Donation

altRecently, the Payton Wright Pediatric Cancer Research Grant for the V Foundation was the fortunate recipient of funds raised Anne Goyer and her team at FIN-X ’07, the international conference and expo for industrial finishers.  

Anne Goyer explained, “I was inspired by the recent battle a 5-year old from our community fought against a rare form of brain cancer.  Her name is Payton Wright,” Goyer continued.  “Most of us have been touched by someone who has or is fighting this dreaded disease.  After following Payton’s battle for the past year, I knew making a donation to fight cancer in Payton’s name was a great idea.  She and her family fought a courageous and inspirational battle.  Sadly, we lost Payton on May 29 of this year, but her spirit lives on.”

Read more: Payton Wright Pediatric Cancer Donation

Boys and Girls Club of Sarasota County PSA

altI had a lot of fun on 10/10/07 as I shot a special Public Service Announcement (PSA) for one of my favorite organizations, The Boys and Girls Clubs of Sarasota County.

Under the leadership of Mack Reid, the Boys and Girls Clubs are doing some wonderful things right here in my community. 

The youngsters who attend the Boys and Girls Clubs have the wonderful opportunity to engage in a wide variety of after-school activities led by some of the most dedicated and talented people serving kids.

Read more: Boys and Girls Club of Sarasota County PSA

Tampa Bay Lightning Practice

altOn Tuesday, Oct. 2nd my family and I got a special treat as Tampa Bay Lightning Head Coach, John Tortorella invited us to watch his team practice before his season gets underway on Thursday.
The entire Lightning organization, including Arlynn Haarer, Jay Preble and Bill Wickett all in the Lightning PR/Communications office, could not have been nicer to me and my family. Upon arrival they greeted us with personalized Lightning jerseys (for me and my five grandkids) and allowed me to take my grandkids into the Lightning locker room to meet some players and take photos.

Read more: Tampa Bay Lightning Practice

Moffitt Cancer Center Grant Presentation

altDick Vitale was honored on Thursday, September 27th to be a part of a very special and meaningful grant presentation. The V Foundation and Dick presented Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida with a $1 million dollar check dedicated for cancer research at this world-class research institution.
The funds raised were a result of the Dick Vitale Gala which was held in May 2007 at the Ritz Carlton in Sarasota, Florida.  Dick explained, “I was thrilled beyond belief by all the beautiful people in the Bradenton and Sarasota area who helped make this grant a reality.  I am now working on my new goal of $1 million for the research of pediatric cancers.”  Present at the luncheon were many special and generous individuals who helped to make this grant presentation a reality.

Read more: Moffitt Cancer Center Grant Presentation

Horizons Academy - Bradenton, FL

altOn Tuesday, September 18th I had a terrific opportunity to speak at the Horizons Academy (Grades 4-12) in Manatee County Florida.  Horizons Academy is an alternative school for some of our area’s youngsters who have had a troubled past.

Horizons Academy offers these kids an opportunity to improve upon their situation and their lives and begin a fresh start for their future.  I spoke to the group as requested by Deputy Harris in the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office. I took my time with the group to talk about the importance of making good decisions in life in order to lead a successful, productive and happy life.

Read more: Horizons Academy - Bradenton, FL

Gulf Coast Community Foundation

altI was selected to be a part of the Because it Matters media campaign created by the Gulf Coast Community Foundation.  The goal of the campaign is to encourage our citizens to communicate in a more civil and productive manner. 

I had the opportunity to offer a personal testimonial about the importance of thinking positively each day of your life.  By having a positive attitude for each day, you can achieve your goals and make your dreams a reality.

Read more: Gulf Coast Community Foundation

The Sarasota Sports Foundation

altThe Sarasota Sports Foundation is a local non-profit funding organization that is doing some amazing things to prevent the cycle of child abuse, neglect and abandonment in our local community.

Founded by Graci McGillicuddy just a few years ago, the Sarasota Sports Foundation has already raised significant funds that have been granted to agencies in our area that are helping put an end to child abuse. 

I had a great time shooting the public service announcement to promote their upcoming 3rd Annual celebrity gala and golf tournament which will be held at the Longboat Key Club and Resort.

Read more: The Sarasota Sports Foundation

The Out-of-Door Academy Varsity Volleyball Team

I had a great time on August 20th as my wife, Lorraine, and I had a special evening of dinner and a movie in our home with the members, coaches and administrators of the 2007-08 Women’s Varsity Volleyball Team from Out-of-Door Academy (ODA) here in Sarasota, Florida.   

The dinner was the result of the players’ parents’ generosity by being the high bidder on the “Dinner and a Movie with Dick Vitale” at the school’s 2006 Extravaganza fundraiser event which raised over $430,000 for the school. The girls were a lot of fun and seemed very excited about having a great season this year.  After the team enjoyed the great food prepared by Gordon Lippe of Gordon’s Gourmet, I invited them up to our movie theatre and shared with them some of my insights on what it takes to be successful both on and off the court.   

Read more: The Out-of-Door Academy Varsity Volleyball Team

Tampa Bay Lightning Coach, John Tortorella

altAugust 17th my wife and I shared a terrific evening with the head coach for the Tampa Bay Lightning, John Tortorella and his wife Christine. They drove to Lakewood Ranch to meet us for dinner and to discuss ideas about fundraising for a cause that both John and I are passionate about - cancer.

We decided to have a private dinner for all the season ticket holders before a home Lightning game in which I will talk to everyone gathered. All donations from the evening will go towards benefitting the V Foundation, specifically towards a pediatric grant for cancer research in memory of Payton Wright.

John is a terrific leader and a terrific human being. Tampa is lucky to have him on board!

Quote of the Week

"Total shocker as life is never ever cupcake city In the SEC as South Carolina stunned Georgia."

-Dick Vitale