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60th annual Variety Kids Telethon poster courtesy of the Variety Club.
60th annual Variety Kids Telethon poster courtesy of the Variety Club.

Variety Club announces 60th annual Variety Kids Telethon


Tue, Feb 15th 2022 12:15 pm

Live Saturday, March 5, on WGRZ; Sunday, March 6, on WBBZ

The 60th annual Variety Kids Telethon will take place at the Variety Club headquarters located at 6114 Broadway, Lancaster. The event will be produced and presented from both the studios of WGRZ-TV Channel 2, and the Variety Club HQ from 6-11 p.m. Saturday, March 5. The presentation will also be streamed live at www.wgrz.com.  

The Sunday telecast will originate completely from Club Variety HQ from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. live on WBBZ-TV, Your Hometown MeTV Station, Channel 67.1 on-air; Cable 5; FiOS 5; Dish 5; DirecTV67. The Sunday presentation will be streamed live on the Variety Club of Buffalo Facebook page.

Organizers said, “We are both thrilled and humbled to say the Variety Kids Telethon is entering its 60th year! It’s hard to believe that it has been 60 years, and we are proud to be the longest locally produced Telethon in the United States.”

They added, “Now entering its 60th year, the Variety Kids Telethon has endured because of the support from tens of thousands of Western New Yorkers who tune in and pledge their support each year, along with corporate partners who participate in our corporate match.”

Telethon proceeds benefit dozens of local children’s nonprofits in Western New York, in addition to the Variety Tent No. 7/Robert Warner MD Rehabilitation Center at the new Oishei Children’s Hospital. The Variety Kids Telethon holds the distinction of being the longest-running locally produced telethon in the country, and in 2021 raised over $800,000.”

Organizers said, “For the 60th annual Variety Kids Telethon, it will include a wonderful celebration of sharing memories and stories, reliving the telethon history and, of course, focusing on the future!”

For 2022, prominent attorney Paul Cambria (also Chief Barker of Variety) will return with the president of the Buffalo Common Council, Rev. Darius Pridgen, to co-host the telethon.

Television personalities who are scheduled to participate in the shows from WGRZ, include:

√ Scott Levin and Mary Alice Demler, anchors of “Channel 2 News”

√ Melissa Holmes and Pete Gallivan, anchors of “Daybreak”

√ Claudine Ewing, “Channel 2 News” weekend anchor and reporter.

√ Kate Welshofer, “Most Buffalo” host and reporter, and Channel 2 News anchor.

√ Catherine Miller, host of the weekly “Passionate Living” program.

√ Judge Penny Wolfgang, host of the weekly “Big Picture” program.

√ Jordan James, host of the weekly “Good Deeds Buffalo” program

√ Kim Piazza, host of “Shea’s 710 Presents”

√ Kate Glaser, host of the weekly “Hometown Health Connection” and Hope Rises founder

√ Pastors Steve Biegner, Jeremiah Smith and Roger Griffiths from the weekly “Church Unleashed” service

√ Constance Caldwell, Tony Billoni and Jeffrey Roberts from the nationally syndicated “Off Beat Cinema”

√ Steve Cichon, “Buffalo’s Storyteller” contributor to The Buffalo News, and administrator at Bishop Timon

√ Ron Dombrowski, host of “Polka Buzz” on WBBZ-TV and “Drive Time Polkas” on WXRL and WECK Radio

√ Psychic medium Karyn Reece and Alexa Zappia from “The Karyn Reece Show”

√ Paul Peck and Sue Najowski from “Beat The Champ”

Radio personalities scheduled to participate include:

√ Shredd & Ragan from “97 Rock”

√ Dave Jickster from “97 Rock”

√ Clay Moden from WYRK “Country 106.5” FM

√ Adriana Viverette from WBLK “Power 94” FM

√ Liz Mantel from 107.7-FM “The Wolf”

Local bands scheduled to appear include:

√ Moe Potter – Sunday at 11 a.m.

√ Flipside – Sunday at 2 p.m.

√ The Buffalo Touch – Sunday at 3 p.m.

√ Nerds Gone Wild – Sunday at 4 p.m.

√ Hit N’ Run – recorded performance

√ Taylor Made Jazz with Van Taylor – Saturday at 9 p.m.

√ True Bethel Baptist Church Choir – Sunday morning recorded performance

√ Mount Olive Baptist Church Choir – Sunday afternoon recorded performance

Organizers said, “These popular local bands have not only donated their talents to the telethon, but other fundraising events in the past year. We encourage their fan base to tune in and donate.

“They join inspirational local artist Cory James Gallagher, who appears Sunday morning.”

Headline guests include Frankie Scinta, “The Showman”; “The Voice” competitors Cami Clune and Joshua Vacanti; Buffalo Singing Cop and “The Amazing Race” competitor Moe Badger; former Buffalo Bills player Darryl Talley; The Buffalo Touch polka band; and Robby Takac of the Goo Goo Dolls.

All artists and times are subject to change.

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