Article and photos by Jeannine Alsous
At 86 degrees and sunny, the weather could not have been any more perfect. While many people were enjoying the Thunder on the Niagara, there was another event happening right around the corner last weekend. With everyone dressed in red, white and blue for the patriotic theme, the Precious Plate and Precision Process annual company family picnic raised funds for WNY Heroes.
The picnic is geared to bring the families from both companies together to raise money for a favorite and honorable charity of choice.
Eric Hutcheson and Dan Rossi accepted a check of $4,500 at the picnic on Sunday from Scott Law, president of both Precious Plate and Precision Process.
Founded in 2007 by U.S. Army veteran Chris M. Krieger and community activist Dionne Kane, WNY Heroes is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization serving the needs of Western New York's veterans and their families. The mission of WNY Heroes is to provide veterans, members of the armed services, and the widows and children of deceased veterans with access to essential services, financial assistance and resources that support their lives and sustain their dignity.
It is the vision of WNY Heroes to create a centralized resource to meet the needs of veterans and their families through collaborations with partnering community organizations. Companion organizations provide direct support or serve as bridge organization for physical and mental health, as well as financial, legal and workforce development opportunities.
Although unable to attend, Krieger said, "Each year, Precious Plate Inc. and Precision Process and its amazing employees continue to give more and more towards our mission that allows us to assist our local heroes right here in WNY. Your support makes us who we are today. Thank you enough for believing in us, trusting us to be there when we are needed most. Your support goes without saying, thank you for being a hero."
The picnic included food catered from the Gratwick Fire Co.; caricature stylings by Sal Anello, owner of Canvas Crashers in Niagara Falls; a rock wall, inflatable maze, face-painting and photo booth; an employee-run corn hole tournament; and an extensive basket auction with more than 90 baskets and certificates. The company also raffled off large prizes such as Buffalo Bills "Monday Night Football" tickets, a signed Zemgus Girgensons Buffalo Sabres hockey stick, a 55-inch flat-screen television, a homemade patriotic quilt, a staycation at the DoubleTree in Niagara Falls and two children's mountain bikes.