The Friends of New Jersey Festival Orchestra, the auxiliary and fund raising arm of the orchestra, has announced that Mrs. Jennifer Colamedici and Mrs. Michelle Pierce, Westfield residents, will serve as co-chairs of this year’s tour to be held on Saturday, May 9th from 10am - 3pm.
 
In releasing the announcement last week, Alicia Barker, president of The Friends, observed, “The tour is a much-anticipated local tradition when owners of some of the area's remarkable homes generously throw open their doors to the public to benefit our symphony orchestra.” Mrs. Barker further states, “There is a wide diversity of outstanding architecture and stylish décor in the homes of our community which must be seen to be fully appreciated.  Coming only a day before Mother’s Day, tickets to the tour could be a unique way to spend some extra time with Mom and perhaps choose a plant for her at our sale.”
 
 
Jennifer Colamedici is a member of the Friends since 2012.  She began her residential real estate career 20 years ago.  A consistent top producer with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage's West office in Westfield, NJ.,she is a Previews Property Specialist (Luxury Homes); the recipient of many prestigious awards including NCJAR Circle of Excellence-Silver 2014; a Certified Negotiation Expert; Accredited Buyers Representative, and Senior’s Real Estate Specialist.
 
Mrs. Colamedici’s commitments include her involvement with organizations that support children with special needs, specifically hearing loss and deafness advocacy.  She is a dedicated resource and mentor to families of newly diagnosed youngsters.  She currently serves on the Board of "Hands and Voices" of New Jersey and is a past Parent Representative on the Board for Summit Speech School in New Providence, New Jersey.  A long-time Westfield resident, Mrs. Colamedici and her husband are parents of two sons.

Michelle Pierce is a life-long resident of Westfield.  She began her career in 1996 as a Sales Representative for Hoffmann-LaRoche/Genentech and is the recipient of multiple awards during her tenure.  She currently continues working for the company specializing in Oncology.
 
The mother of two, Mrs. Pierce is dedicated to, and actively involved in, her children’s activities. She is Vice-President of the Washington School PTO, a board member of the Girls Softball League of Westfield, a member of the Junior Woman’s Club of Westfield and is active in the projects of the Presbyterian Church-in-Westfield. 
 
Mrs. Barker states “We are thrilled that these two wonderful ladies agreed to chair this important fund raiser for the orchestra.  They both possess the outstanding vision and organizational skills necessary to ensure the success of this year’s tour.”
 
Mrs. Pierce took the opportunity last week to announce that this year’s tour will include an exciting new element that will interest especially car buffs.  In an effort to provide something for everyone, individual luxury automobiles, chosen from among a fascinating collection will be on display at each home location. 
 
As in previous years, musical entertainment will be provided in each home on the tour, while refreshments and a display of raffle prizes will be available in specific homes.  The popular plant sale also returns to offer showy and hardy blooms for front porches and gardens.
 
 “The Home Tour is a key element of the funding mix that’s necessary to operate the orchestra,” according to David Wroe, Music Director of the New Jersey Festival Orchestra.  “The ‘Friends’ have been true to their name in this respect since the group’s very inception.  Supplemental fund raising is critical because only about a third of our revenue comes from the sale of tickets.” 
 
Mrs. Pierce points out that the Westfield area is one of only a very few smaller communities nationwide that is home to a professional symphony orchestra.  She observes, “NJFO is truly a treasure that places a "Carnegie Hall" quality orchestra right on our doorstep. My children particularly love the Holiday Concert, and we look forward to it every year!" 
 
Tickets for the 2015 Tour of Notable Homes are $35 in advance ($40 on May 9) and will available on line at www.njfestivalorchestra.org. After April 5tickets will also available at Baron’s Drugs and The Town Bookstore in Westfield; Christoffers Flowers and Gifts in Mountainside; Norman’s Hallmark in Fanwood, and Periwinkles in Cranford.
 

For more information go to www.njfestivalorchestra.org or visit the Friends of NJ Festival Orchestra on Facebook.