Saturday marked the start of the new Derby season and the GMDD got things off to a energetic start at The Essex Fairgrounds with Grade A Fancy whipping the pants off of the South Jersey Derby Girls. The Dames’ second team, The Black Ice Brawlers didn’t fare as well against the Hellions of Troy, but they played well and they were still a ton of fun to watch.
It was a sellout crowd and many who attended were “Derby Virgins”. The Beer Garden was as rowdy as ever, but the bleachers were filled with fans from 5 years to 85 years old. The team’s mascots, Paul Severe and Gang Green kept things lively off the track and announcers Rock Thudson and Candy Corn-ary were their entertaining selves throughout the day. If you’ve never experienced Roller Derby, you dont know what you’re missing. Check out my “Chick Clicker” slide show (to Pat Benatar‘s “Hit Me With Your Best Shot“) and then put March 19 down on your calendar for the GMDD’s next home turf bout!
Picture 550 women, all wearing red, all gathered at the Sheraton Hotel and Conference Center for one unified mission: to educate themselves about heart disease and then commit to living a longer and healthier life. This was the scene Wednesday at the 2011 Vermont Go Red For Women luncheon.
The event was hosted by two amazing women in their own right, Burlington developer Melinda Moulton and Green Mountain Power CEO Mary Powell. The day’s activities included a morning introduction with the inspirational Vermont singer Shyla Nelson, a CPR class and other breakout sessions, a beautiful lunch with music by Jenni Johnson, silent auction and many information tables set up by area health organizations. Ultra talented photographer Cyndi Freeman moved through the crowd taking event pictures, while I was in charge of the photo activity near and dear to my heart: A Picture and a Promise.
A Picture And A Promise is generously underwritten by North Country Savings, and I volunteer my time to set up a mobile portrait studio and photograph the attendees showing their “Inner Diva”. After filling out a “promise card” naming a healthy goal for their lives, the women don red hats, feather boas, silk gloves, whatever floats their boat and then I take their portraits. In a couple of weeks, I mail each attendee their promise card and portrait, to remind them all of the importance of the day and the commitment to health we all made together. The resulting collection of images is fabulous, fun and empowering. The following slide show, set to Sister Sledge‘s “We are Family”, shows some of these incredible women in all their RED glory:
** In a day or two, look on FACEBOOK, where I’ll post everyone’s portraits in an album on my profile page: Make yours your Profile Picture and Spread the RED message!
Finally, the winner of the drawing for the family portrait sitting is…. Brenda Howley of South Burlington! (AHA’s Joy Blanchard was the official “drawer” of the winner):
Life was anything but a DRAG Saturday night at Higher Ground for the annual Winter Is A Drag Ball, sponsored by the House of LeMay. It was a sold out crowd, full of Queens, Kings and a host of other well dressed attendees, and everyone was there to have fun and support the Vermont People With AIDS Coalition
So, without further ado, on with the slideshow (to Lady Gaga’s “Just Dance“:
If you’d like to see all the photos from the DRAG BALL and order enlargements, please click HERE
Thanks to BCBSVT Hundreds of people enjoyed this amazing Vermont snow Saturday with free ski and snow shoe rentals and free trail fees at Catamount Family Center. Blue Cross is one of my favorite clients, and I love shooting their health-oriented community events–not to mention that they always yield some awesome photos.
So, just in case the abundant amount of snow has started to get any of you down as you shovel out your cars each morning, just take a minute to remember one of the reasons why we all have really chosen to live in this winter paradise….it really doesn’t get better than this!
Saturday was the annual Penguin Plunge into Lake Champlain. Over 1000 people dove, jumped or “plunged” into 30 degree water, all to help raise money for Special Olympics. In total, $360,000 was raised for the organization.
I had many friends who participated in Saturday’s event, including some of the Baristas I work with at Starbucks at Maple Tree Place, as well as some of the awesome Green Mountain Derby Dames I have the privilege to photograph regularly.
The following is a slideshow of my favorites, with a little music accompaniment (WIPEOUT by the Surfaris) ENJOY!