Saturday, October 29, 2011

November Events

comedyJoin us November 4th & 5th as we make you laugh for a good cause. CJSTUF is teaming with Richmond Mom and Comedy Sportz for two nights of laughter. Bring the gang out to this family friendly show and watch as representatives from CJSTUF and Richmond Mom join the Comedy Sportz Pros in improv skits and games.

Rachel & CJSTUF board member Lauren Coe will team up for the Friday show while Roger and RichmondMom founder Kate Hall will engage in a battle of wits on Saturday.  

Roger, Lauren, and I attended one of their shows last Saturday and we were in stitches the entire night.  It was a great show for all ages.

Admission is $10 per person and a portion of the proceeds will benefit CJSTUF
Show times are 8 PM on Friday, November 4th & 7 PM on Saturday, November 5th. 
Call 804-266-9377 to reserve your tickets. 

If art is more your thing, join us November 14th at Spirited Art.  We are honored to have been chosen by this new art venue in Short Pump to help with their Grand Opening.  Spirited Art can help bring out the artist in everyone. If you can draw basic shapes and stick figures, you can create a painting masterpiece!  Check out the details below, grab your friends, and reserve your spot!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

On Sale Now!

Who doesn't love a sale?  

All CJSTUF t-shirts have been discounted.  We would like to get some new merchandise with the NEW CJSTUF logo but we need to clear out some of our existing inventory. 

Start your holiday shopping and get a shirt for everyone in the family! Quantities are limited and these shirts will never be made again (at least with this design). Many shirts are available in adult and youth sizes.

Butterfly Tee, Ladies Cut (white)
Available in sizes S-XXL
Now $15
*Note: This shirt will not be discontinued
Bald Chicks Rock Tee (pink)
Available in Youth Sizes XS-L
and Adults Sizes S, L, XL, XXL
Now $11.25

Team CJ Tee (purple)
Available in Adult Sizes S-XL
Now $7.50

TUF Chicks Tee (pink)
Available in Youth Sizes 2T-Large
Now $7.50
TUF Guys Tee (pink)
Available in Youth Sizes 2T-Medium
Now $7.50

Also available: window clings, posters from the CJSTUF Art Auction (limited quanitites available), and the downloadable single of Strengthened By You.

The Art Auction 2011 Poster Design
Suitable for framing
Shipping is $5 for out-of-town orders but waived on all in-town (local pick-up) orders.

Do you have any ideas for new CJSTUF t-shirts or merchandise? Email your thoughts to us! (or just comment on the blog)

Sunday, October 9, 2011

California Pizza Kitchen: This Thursday!

First, a thank-you to the generous donors who supported us recently during The Amazing Raise.  We did not receive any of the matching challenge grants but we did raise over $1000 in a 36-hour period!  We hope that The Community Foundation will repeat this event next year. 

The year is winding down. Can you believe it's already October? While our major events are done for the year, we do have some fun things to put on your calendar. 

First, plan to eat your dinner at California Pizza Kitchen in Short Pump this Thursday, October 13th.  Print and bring THIS FLYER to the restaurant and 20% of your order will benefit CJSTUF.  This offer is valid all day for both take-out and dine-in options but you must have the flyer.  

Also, keep the evenings of November 4th or 5th reserved on your calendar.  You will not want to miss this! CJSTUF has teamed with ComedySportz Richmond and RichmondMom for an evening of improv humor.  The shows are at 8 PM on Friday and 7 PM on Saturday.  If you've never heard of Comedy Sportz, think "Whose Line is It Anyway?"  

The show is all improv humor and will be very family-friendly.  Here's the kicker: Roger, Rachel, and two representatives from Richmond Mom will join the comedy professionals on the stage for a night of fun.  $2 from each $10 ticket sale will benefit CJSTUF.  

More events on the docket for November (and maybe December too).  Stay tuned!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Amazing Raise Starts Today!

This is it! Today is the day! 

If you didn't have a chance to support us through the Art Auction...
If you've been looking for a way to help your donation go farther....

Join us in The Amazing Raise!

This 36-hour online giving event will start at 6 AM on Wednesday, October 5th and ends at 6 PM on October 6th.  During this event, Richmond area organizations like ours will be eligible for matching gifts of up to $10,000 when we receive unique donations of $50 or more from our supporters. 

It's super simple:

1. Go to our profile on the Give Richmond website (just search for CJ's Thumbs Up Foundation) or look for the webforms in this blog post and on our website. Give a donation of $25 or more.  Prizes will be given to the Richmond-area organizations that collect the most unique donors.  In addition, there will be other prizes given throughout the 36-hour period

2. Spread the word on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites. Encourage your friends, family and strangers to join you in The Amazing Raise.  

The Amazing Raise goes from 6 AM October 5th-6 PM October 6th.  Thanks for your support!

Monday, October 3, 2011

My Favorite Part of the CJSTUF Art Auction

On Friday, the First Annual CJSTUF Art Auction took place at the Cultural Arts Center of Glen Allen.  It was a ton of work, most of it done by others.  The lion's share of my contribution was to secure donations of art and be a cheerleader for the real worker bees of the event, Rachel and Michelle (Alford).

It was a successful evening and the fact that all of our expenses were covered before anyone even walked through the door made anything that came in from the actual auction pure bonus.

The dessert table, wonderfully set by Homemades By Suzanne, included a chocolate fountain (a MUST at any CJSTUF event). Coconut macaroons, strawberries, pineapple, and pound cake were skewered  on big toothpicks and dunked in the chocolate and various other delectable chocolaty things were available to "make everything better" (since we know that is definitely the case).

The wine was very good and we are fortunate to know Ian at The Caboose in Ashland who donated it all.

Anthony Williams provided some great guitar music to start things off. Taught him everything I know.  OK...maybe not.

Susan Greenbaum was masterful in her role as auctioneer.  So masterful, in fact, that John Toscano and I never felt the need to assume our roles as co-emcees.  We mostly did our best Vanna White impression and displayed/traded out art pieces as they were auctioned off.

But of all the great things that happened Friday night,  I believe my favorite part of the evening was when Deb Price, mother of four including two with Sickle Cell Disease, came to the podium and spoke about their journey.  She didn't come to ask for pity or grovel in appreciation.  She came to be the face of what we do; to remind everyone in attendance of why they they were there and the reason we keep having fund raisers.

Well spoken and poised, she related Nile's and Olivia's story and the long recovery process involved with SCD and Nile's bone marrow transplant.  No one else there could have said it better.  We thank her for her candor and appreciate her courage.

The crowd wasn't huge but very generous and with what we've learned from this first event, next year's Art Auction should be quite the shindig!  Mark your calendars now (we're not sure when but mark them anyway).

Next up on the docket is the Amazing Raise this week.  Starting at 6am October 5, you can help CJSTUF win thousands in matching gifts buy donating just $50.  Depending on when you donate, your contribution will count toward any number of contests that could bring us $1,000 to $10,000 above the actual donations!

Here is a list of the separate contests and I'd like to enlist your opinions of what THREE (3) areas we should  target to maximize our impact. Please email with your top three categories and, as always, spread the word!

Thank you very much,

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Early results are in!

Oh what a night!

Our first annual CJSTUF Art Auction was last night and it was, in a word, amazing!

I will have pictures and more information to post soon, but I can share a few things:

Over 30 pieces of art were auctioned for a total of over $2200
The raffle tickets and event registrations will add to that total.  

Thanks to our generous sponsors, our costs were covered before the event even began so 100% of the money earned last night (and then some) will go directly to the support of families with chronic and life threatening illnesses.

There are so many people to thank:

  • Alyssa Ford and Meredith Hayes designed the decor and filled the room with pink and purple butterflies
  • Susan Greenbaum was the energetic, entertaining, amusing, and adorable emcee 
  • Anthony Williams shared his talents on the guitar
  • Deb Price shared her experience as a beneficiary of a CJSTUF financial assistance grant
  • Our amazing Board of Directors helped in any way necessary, including setup, cleanup, and (most importantly) bidding on some fabulous art
  • Thanks to our generous sponsors who provided both financial and in-kind support to make this event possible:
  • Thanks to the 18 artists who donated their works to the event
  • Thanks to the local chapter of the American Heart Association for their generous loan of easels and display materials
  • Thanks to our event coordinator, Michelle Alford, who has been working on the details of this event for almost 6 months.  Not only was this event a labor of love, but Michelle had her own labor of love this week when she gave birth to her second child, a baby girl, on Thursday morning. We were sad that Michelle was unable to attend the event but grateful for all the work she did to make the evening a success.  
September is finished but October is still busy for CJSTUF.  

Just a reminder to set your clocks for The Amazing Raise this Wednesday and Thursday.  If you missed the Art Auction, here is a great opportunity to make a donation to our organization.  Donate through the Give Richmond website from 6 AM October 5th through 6 PM October 6th and your donations may be matched through generous grants provided by the Community Foundation.  

ALSO! Join us at California Pizza Kitchen in Short Pump on Thursday, October 13th.  Bring this flyer, present it when you order and 20% of your sale will benefit CJSTUF.  This is valid for both carry out and dine-in options.  

Stay tuned for more news and events!