Our First Big Picture Foundation Benefit



photography by Greta Lleshaj

Audio Clips From the PONTICELLI Kids’ Performances…superduperskinny
Thank you so much to John Copper for sharing his recordings with BPF. Link:  Learn about the Ponticelli Musicians and read about their newly appointed Big Picture Foundation honorary titles. superduperskinny

BPF Fall Benefit

by Ellie Kirk

On September 22nd, Big Picture Foundation (BPF) held its first-ever benefit, which was generously hosted by the Rye Presbyterian Church. The benefit encompassed a series of events that included, a live auction and a cello concert. The Ponticelli Cello Group has helped to raise great awareness for our organization through their esteemed performances which they serenade us with graciously. The team of sophomores, who are the embodiment of the group, includes, leader and musician Sean Yu, Dylan Shih Wu, Chelsie Lim, and Jenny Jiang.  Thank you so much to everyone who joined the Big Picture Foundation for our first benefit, an event that was generously hosted by the Rye Presbyterian Church.  Event sponsors included Dr. Paul Chu, Carpet Trends, and Murphy Medical Associates.  The live auction was made possible in part by local businesses and families who contributed items that varied with each group that donated. Businesses and organizations that donated to our cause included; Arcade Booksellers, Caspari, Cecilia Jewel, Corner Stone Caterers, Costco, Cover Story, David’s Hair Care and Color, Eric Cooper Images, The Framing Corner, Greenwich town Party, Hometownlove, Royal Jewels of Rye, Remarkable Moms, Splurge Gifts, Tarte Cosmetics, Univision, Whole Foods and Woodrow Jewelers.  Also generously contributing to the event were the Cooper Family, DuRei Family,  Eckstein Family, Wies Family, Agarwal Family, Kirk Family, Iuliano Family, O’Brien Family, Roman Family, Haanschotten Family, Levine Family, Kelly Family, and Tamalonis Family.

While the PONTICELLI kids were the stars of the show, the concert would never have happened without our super-energized benefit committee, including Leslie Wyman Cooper, Cathy Du Rei, Meera Agarwal, Kim Rotondo, and PONTICELLI coordinator, Jee Yu.

As a nonprofit organization, Big Picture Foundation thrives off of the support of volunteers that range from Rye High School and Middle School students to parents and teachers. The volunteers affiliated with Big Picture Foundation worked diligently alongside executive director Kim Tamalonis to ensure that the event ran smoothly and was as prosperous as it was intended to be. In particular, Diane Shaaban, Roni Sarig, Aleksey Vodyanitskiy, Matthew Reid,  Hillery Hunter, Julie Corbalis, our board of directors and our benefit committee are to be thanked for their consistent support in our growing organization, as well as, for the general set up of the event.

We also much extend huge thanks to… Brit Foster Rothstein, former BPF Board Chairwoman, who bought the BPF snowboard used by Connor Kelly (Paul Kelly) at the 2018 USASA Snowboard Championships in Copper Mountain, Colorado.  The snowboard was covered in global BPF kids’ art.  Brit donated the board back to BPF so that we would forevermore own this cherished piece of the history of our organization. Dana Munoz, a saleswoman at Michaels Arts and Crafts.  When, on Saturday afternoon, I was checking out and I told her that our dessert for the following day had fallen through, she volunteered to help.  That night, she made 100 cupcakes that she delivered to the church before going to work, the next morning. She had never met me before that encounter. Jerry’s Post Road Market, for opening their backdoor, on their day off, just to sell us ice for the event. Every single person mentioned above worked as a team to pull off an afternoon that will remain a point-of-pride for our little-BPF-engine-that-could forevermore.  
The program…