Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Cher-tastic, Week-Long Event Raises Over $11,000 for CCA Kids

Back Row L-R Robert Ryan, Chad Michaels, Ralph Martinelli, Candi Stratton
Front: Paula Guzzo 

An incredibly successful fundraising event took place on the high seas netting Children's Craniofacial Association $11,782 in just one week. The Cher Crewz began in New York and set sail on board a Norweigan Cruise Liner thanks to the coordination of R and R Travel and dedicated Cher fans. 

At the beginning of the week, Cher enthusiasts descended on Rise Bar in New York City to raise money for CCA kids, enjoy performances by Chad Michaels, winner of RuPaul’s Drag Race and Candi Stratton, Miss Trans USA 2019, and bid on silent auction items during the first week of November 2018. Thanks to ticket sales and silent auction items CCA raised $4,400 at this one-of-a-kind event. 
Candi Stratton performs for the crowd as Cher

This diehard group of Cher fans were headed on a cruise together, but not before giving back to our kids. The night began with some drinks and dancing at the bar surrounded by the bright lights of New York City and Cher fans from around the world. Later, Chad Michaels sang a few Cher tunes complete with a number of elaborate costume changes just as the diva herself would do. Next Candi Stratton performed for the crowd stepping out into the audience to dance and interact with everyone in the club. To close out the performances, parent and former CCA board member, Paula Guzzo, spoke about the impact that CCA had on her family after the birth of their son Scott Guzzo 34 year ago. Scott was the CCA ambassador for the Cher Crewz that departed the next day. 

Many talented and generous people were kind enough to donate items to the silent auction. Artist and friend of CCA, Scott Clarke donated a number of his Cher-related artworks. A signed Cher T-Shirt, poster, backstage passes and a hotel stay at Hilton’s Millenium New York Downtown hotel were all ripe for the bidding during the evening’s festivities. 

Scott Guzzo, CCA Ambassador

More performances would await the Cher fans once they boarded the Norweigan Cruise Line ship, Escape. An additional $7,382 was raised through tips donated by both Candi and Michael, more auction items won, a $1,100 donation by the Guzzo family rounded out the fundraising on board the ship throughout the week. The $1,100 donation was matched by global pharmaceutical giant, Bristol Myers Squib. Throughout the week-long voyage, the Guzzos took the opportunity to speak to group of Cher fans and other cruisers about CCA and what it does for our families.  Scott, Paula, and Bob Guzzo made this cruise a rousing success, pushing us into a double-digit total of $11,782. 

Many people were involved in the logistics of cruise, most importantly the Ralph Martinelli and Robert Ryan, of R and R Travel. We cannot thank them enough for considering us as benefactors for this year's Cher Crewz. Many thanks also go out to Rise Bar NYC, who played gracious host to the VIP event on Saturday, November 3rd.  

Excellent work! We love you all!  

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