Yesterday, I became famous. At least my voice did when got my 15 minutes of radio fame. I’ve always known I had a face for radio . . . 🙂
It all started when my co-worker Mel and I were lucky enough to be invited to visit the 94.3FM WCYY studio in Portland to be a part of the 6th Annual Mark-A-Thon. Local DJ Mark Curdo stays on the air for 102 hours straight every year to raise money for the Center for Grieving Children. How does he stay awake for that long? I have no idea! If I was him I would have been curled up in a corner asleep by the time we got there at the end of Day2. But I think working for such a great cause was keeping him peppy and awake. Or maybe it was Red Bull.
Anyways, the Center for Grieving Children is a great organization working in Southern Maine to offer counseling services to children and families who have suffered the loss of a loved one. They have 2 locations, one in Portland and one in Sanford, and over the last 25 years have been able to serve over 66,000 Maine children, teens, and families. The best part? The services offered by the center are 100% FREE. They describe their mission as “to provide loving support that encourages the safe expression of grief and loss and fosters each individuals resilience and emotional well-being” (from their website http://www.cgcmaine.org). It is a truly invaluable service to the kids and families who go there.
The deal with the Mark-A-Thon is that all week long while Mark is on the air you can call in, make a donation to the Center for Grieving Children, and he’ll play any song you want. CYY is normally an alternative rock station, but during this event he will literally play any song from any genre by any artist. We requested Jimmy Buffett which we discovered is on Mark’s all-time never ever play list and he even played that for us. Not without making fun of us a little, but he played it. This year during the Mark-A-Thon he played everything from Taylor Swift to Frank Sinatra to Jay Z to N SYNC. It’s such a cool event which pulls people from all different backgrounds and musical tastes together for a worthy cause.
This morning on the Mark-A-Thon, I heard a clip of a little boy who called in to donate all of his Christmas money to the Center for Grieving Children. Instead of getting presents this year, he asked his parents to donate the money they would have spent on him to this cause. He said he is lucky to have his loved ones around to give him gifts and that he wanted to do something for other kids who might have lost the loved one who gave them presents. I tried not to cry when I heard this adorable child because I was driving, but that is too precious! With all of the Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Shop Til You Drop commercialized buzz this time of year, it’s so easy to forget that this is what the holiday season is really about – giving and sharing with the people we care about. There’s nothing that gives you that warm, fuzzy Christmas feeling like donating to a good cause or helping out a neighbor.
Although we are more than half-way through the 102 hours of this year’s Mark-A-Thon, there’s still time to donate! The Mark-A-Thon will run until 5pm tomorrow, Friday December 6th. Visit https://www.gifttool.com/donations/Donate?ID=1226&AID=3018 and if you pledge a donation to the center, Mark will play any song you want to hear. Any artist. Any genre. Even a song for you Parrotheads:)