Testimonials and Past Events
“Any time you combine families, entertainment, great weather, and ice cream, it’s always a good day. That’s how it was when I worked at the Big Dipper. As a volunteer, I understood that help was vital to Children’s Friend and to the festival. Children’s Friend has been around for a very long time, and because of its dedication to the community, I wanted to volunteer and bring others with me.” -Gordon Wong, Summer Intern, United Way of Central Massachusetts
“After 21 years of volunteering at the Big Dipper, I never cease to enjoy being part of an event at which families have a wonderful time at a great site – beautiful Elm Park. We are all fortunate to have sponsors, vendors, staff and volunteers all working together to help Children’s Friend help kids and families (and it’s fun)!” -Elizabeth Riza, Worcester – Long-time friend and volunteer at Children’s Friend
The Big Dipper All You Can Eat Ice Cream Festival began in 1989 as a family oriented fundraiser for Children’s Friend and was originally planned and organized by some of the agency’s adoptive families. Over the past twenty years, the festival has hosted thousands of children and families. So, The Big Dipper not only creates a great opportunity for family fun, but the money it raises supports the programs and services of Children’s Friend, the oldest child and family service agency in Worcester. Chartered in 1849, we have been improving the lives of children and those who love them for 160 years.
Big Dipper All-You-Can-Eat Ice Cream Festival 2010
“South High students love to volunteer for Children’s Friend and their community events. For the past few years, South High students have volunteered for the Big Dipper, helping to scoop ice cream, face painting and working as runners to help in any way needed. Participating in Children’s Friend’s community events like the Big Dipper has resulted in increased passion for civic engagement and has firmly planted the seeds of leadership in our students. The staff of Children’s Friend provides positive role models for South High students, and treats our students with a warm welcome and appreciation.” -Maureen Binienda, Principal, South High Community School
The 2010 Big Dipper All-You-Can-Eat Ice Cream Festival was a great success. We raised just under $40,000 to benefit the programs of Children’s Friend.
On July17th, beautiful Elm Park baked in the sun on a 90 degree plus day, but we were ready and armed with plenty of ice cream to keep people cool. Besides delicious ice cream, our families loved the Speed Pitch, Moonwalks, face painting, raffle, food tent, team mascots, clowns, fingerpainting and photo ID’s for the kids, hearing and vision checks by the Lions’ District 33-A, and safety demos from the Worcester Fire Department. American Idol finalist Ayla Brown treated the crowd to a wonderful liver performance that got both kids and adults up and dancing. Our families were delighted to meet US Senator Scott Brown, Gail Huff, Arianna Brown and Congressman Jim McGovern – just a few of our popular celebrity scoopers.
By the “ice cream” numbers, over 250 large buckets of ice cream and 27 ice cream cakes from Broadway, Cold Stone Creamery of Millbury, Crystal Caves of Auburn/Robbie’s Place, Dairy Queen of Spencer, Friendly’s, HP Hood, Janine’s Frostee of Ware and Turkey Hill were dished out.
We had over 225 happy and hard working volunteers from the community. Many groups, schools, churches, and companies participated: Oriol Health Care, RH White Construction Co., BayState Savings Bank, WPI, Clark University, St. John’s, South High, Unity Church, United Way, Junior League, Lions’ District 33-A, Mass Volunteers, Rotary Sunrise Club, UMass alumni, Worcester Wildcats’ cheerleaders, and New York Life. If it takes a village, the Big Dipper has become a very large one.
The Big Dipper has been a central Massachusetts tradition since 1989 and grows bigger and better every year. The money it raises is critical to supporting our mission to improve the loves of children and those who love them. To accomplish this mission, our programs are designed to improve family relationships, ensure effective parenting and protection of children, and to help create within each family an environment where children can grown into healthy, educated and responsible members of the community. Our current services reflect the complex needs of contemporary families. Children’s Friend was chartered in 1849, and we are proud of over 160 years of service to central Massachusetts.
Thank you for making the Big Dipper a great success, and check back for the 2011 Big Dipper All-You-Can-Eat Ice Cream Festival date – coming soon!
For more on Elm Park, go to: http://www.worcesterma.gov/dpw/parks-rec/city-parks/elm-park.
To volunteer, sponsor, or donate a raffle item or ice cream, please contact:
2010 Big Dipper Sponsors
Ice Cream Sponsors:
- Broadway Restaurant
- Cold Stone Creamery of Millbury, MA
- Dairy Queen of Spencer, MA
- Friendly’s Ice Cream
- HP Hood
- Janine’s Frostee of Ware, MA
- Robbie’s Place/Crystal Caves of Auburn, MA
- Turkey Hill
- (And more coming!)
- All Clean Home Services
- Brand-Nu Janitorial Service
- Consigli Construction Co., Inc.
- Fox Tours
- J.J. Bafaro, Inc.
- A&D Cold Storage
- Allied Waste Services
- Boston Salads
- Cape Cod Chips
- Coghlin Electric
- Cumberland Farms
- Midtown Meats
- Niman Paper Supply
- Polar Beverages
- RDW Group
- R.H. White Copnstruction Company, Inc.
- Roche Brothers
And a big thank you to our media sponsors!
Nashville Singer-Songwriters Sean and Laurie O’Shea on June 5th at 7:30 PM
Nashville singer-songwriters Sean and Laurie O’Shea will present an intimate concert on Saturday, June 5th at 7:30 PM in the Children’s Friend Historic Great Room at 21 Cedar St. in Worcester. Admission and parking are FREE. Donations are welcome for Children’s Friend if you feel so moved. Sean and Laurie will perform a mix of favorites along with original songs in a coffeehouse style setting.
LAURIE O’SHEA is a singer, songwriter and piano teacher. She’s been a cast member at Disney World Orlando, is active in the Nashville Songwriters’ Association and has been featured at songwriters’ showcases including the world-renowned Bluebird Cafe.
SEAN O’SHEA is an inspirational speaker, singer and songwriter. He has twice opened for author and television personality Dr. Wayne Dyer and has been interviewed on ABC’s Good Morning America. His entertaining and uplifting workshops have inspired an upcoming book called “Spiritual People Skills”.
Together, Sean & Laurie travel the country from their home base of Nashville to share their inspiring songs and stories.
For more information, please contact:
The Miles-Lincoln Silent & Live Auction and Dinner Gala 2010
We held our biggest fundraiser, a silent and live auction and awards dinner gala at beautiful Mechanics Hall in Worcester on Saturday, March 6, 2010 at 5:30 PM. Our honorees, Stephen A. and Kathleen M. Lynch, are long-time leaders and volunteers on behalf of Children’s Friend and are truly deserving of our highest award. We had a very successful auction and dinner gala, and thank everyone who supported us with donations, sponsorships, and attendance at the Gala. The Miles-Lincoln award is named after two of the leaders who founded Children’s Friend in 1849, Mrs. Jonas M. Miles, and Colonel John Waldo Lincoln. We are celebrating over 160 years of helping to improve the lives of children and those who love them.
160th Anniversary Gala at Higgins Armory Museum
Chartered in 1849, Children’s Friend began as an orphans’ home for neglected children, and today, our critical programs for children and families are still going strong. We are the oldest child and family service agency in Worcester! As part of our 160th anniversary, we held a Gala at the Higgins Armory Museum on Saturday, March 14th, 2009. As people roamed the museum, they were treated to delicious food, a wine raffle, a special performance by noted singer Sharon Henderson, and special awards. Our honorees were the adoptive parents on our Board, a nice connection with our beginnings as an orphans’ home. Lieutenant Governor Timothy P. Murray and Tammy Murray presented the awards to our honorees. Not only did we celebrate our 160th anniversary, we raised over $14,000 to support our programs. Thank you to everyone who participated!
Thank You to our 160th Anniversary Sponsors! We are delighted they chose to recognize and support our 160 years of service to the central Massachusetts community:
- Commerce Bank
- Fallon Clinic
- J. J. Bafaro, Inc.
- Bollus Lynch
- Consigli Construction Co., Inc.
- Fallon Community Health Plan
- Home Staff
- Mirick O’Connell
- Saint Vincent Hospital
And thank you to our Annual Sponsors! Our annual sponsors support all of our events during the fiscal year. They help us to maintain our critical programs to the central Massachusetts community throughout the year. We are especially grateful for their continued support in our 160th year of service:
- BayState Savings Bank
- Benefit Development Group
- BioMedical Research Models, Inc.
- Polar Beverages
- Peterson Oil Servicev
- Woodmeister Master Builders
- R.H. White Construction Co., Inc.