I was at a wedding the night before in Twinsburg, Ohio so after a 1 hour drive, I was a little early but the Hebrew National tour crew was already setting up. I had a chance to walk along downtown Vermilion (roundup coming later this week) and loved the quaint and warm feeling from the historical buildings and shops.
Once the picnic started, people starting heading towards Victory Park where we were set-up. Throughout the day, the queue for the free hot dogs was steady and the crew tried to keep things moving but I observed at least on four occasions where the queue had gotten really long. Well, whaddaya expect, it's some good stuff they're giving out!
(OK, so here's a secret. Up till this event, I have never had a Hebrew National hot dog (!). But I read reviews online from people raving about it so I had to squeeze one in before the festivities kicked in. I was surprised by how much I liked it. I hate "salty" hot dogs and the one I had from Hebrew National was definitely not. Noah also commented later on that he was surprised that I ate my hot dog and liked it since it was all-beef and it hit me too that I had not even realized it was beef *duh!* which is seriously impressive since I usually eat turkey hot dogs. Then I also read that their hot dogs contain no artificial flavors, no artificial colors, no by-products, and no fillers, and it had me thinking, "What have I been feeding my girls?" Yeesh.)
Back to our regular blogcast. For entertainment, they laid out games, picnic blankets, and yes, we also had an educational kosher mechanical bull. Thankfully, we also had a very steady-handed controller who made sure the kids (and accompanying dads) were safe. . .
. . . and that those who could take the throwdown, got what they deserved. ;o)
I am so glad he thought it was so funny at the time because all I could think of was, "Oooh, that's going to hurt tomorrow."
We had hands-on service projects where we set-up craft tables where picnic-goers could make cards for USO of Northern Ohio and/or mini canvas art with motivational sayings for the Hitchcock Center for Women.
It warmed this crafter's heart to see so many engaged in collaging and decorating cards and mini canvases.
Tesa of 2Wired2Tired had a great idea to print out sentiments for the USO cards so all someone had to do was pick one and write it on the inside. I gave her the thumbs up then, and I'd give her another round of thumbs up now for that clever idea.
Because we wanted the mini canvases to be easy-to-assemble, I pre-cut the sentiments and paper. This made it really easy for the younger picnic-goers to create their collages.
(I will be sharing the how-to later this week as well, complete with downloads for your use. Follow this blog so you will not miss it.)
This cutey-patootie had a positive message, to "Live, Laugh, and Love" When she added the glitter crown onto the hummingbird's head, I knew we would were BFFs from another time.
This kid wanted them to "Be Brave" *sniffles*
Oh my. This one . . . that face . . .that sweet smile, makes me wanna have hope and believe in me. (For the record, he INSISTED very politely, that the "HOPE" needed to be different colors. Bless him.)
Aside from the kids, others came out to the picnic too,
The local radio station WMJI came out with a booth and announced the event on air. As you can tell, a couple soccer girls came out too.
Some HOT DOGS came out too. Geddit?? Hebrew National Hot Dogs, Hot (due to weather) dogs???
But wait . . . could it be??? Has the word travelled THAT far and THAT wide??
Yes ladies and gentlemen, a bridal party has come to join us!
(Disclaimer for the sake of the bride: They were doing a photo shoot and with our strong encouragement, they walked past our picnic area and the Hebrew National crew made sure we had a hot dog for her - JUST in CASE she was hungry. Unfortunately she was not. And I do not blame her nor do I think it was a complete loss. A good number of her wedding photographs are going to have the Hebrew National truck in the background - I think that's sufficient branding for a lifetime don't you think?
On a sidenote, aren't those bouquets gorgeous??)
We encouraged people to bring some sundries and dried food donations for the two charities and they came through! The donated items were split between USO and Hitchcock Center for Women and even after the split, I ended up with 4 big boxes of items to drive to the Hitchcock Center for Women. Woo Hoo!
Of course, a group photo of the blogger co-hosts for the picnic - Tesa from 2Wired2Tired, moi, Tricia from OnceAMonthMom, and Jenny from MomminItUp. These ladies were so great to work with and I am so honored to have had a chance to work with them and Cooper and Emily from TheMotherhood.com.
On the 55-minute drive to the Hitchcock Center for Women to drop off the donations, I had a discussion in the car with Naia about why we did the charity/service project element at the picnic. She seemed confused that someone would not necessarily have the means to purchase toothbrush or toothpaste but she was quick to offer hers from our bathroom closet.