SOUTH ORANGE, NJ – Small hands held up a big check during the presentation of a $5,000 donation to First Night Maplewood South Orange from BCB Community Bank on Monday night.
The children of Scott and Kathy Greenstone – Zoey, 7, and Henry, 9 – joined bank officials and First Night organizers at the bank for the presentation.
Also participating: BCB representatives William Pawlo, executive vice president, John Amato, business development officer, and Claudine Baptise, branch manager; Scott and Kathy Greenstone, Michael and Amy Goldberg and Sandi Goodman.
First Night board President Michael Goldberg said fundraising is going well, as is booking performers and activities for First Night, which will take place from 5-10 p.m. on New Year’s Eve at Columbia High School. “There are lots of facilities,” he said. First Night activities will use the gyms, the auditorium, the theater, the cafeteria and various classrooms.
“With one month to go, we have a large collection of performers lined up,” he said. In addition to the headline act The Nerds, attendees can enjoy Lisa Liu circus acts, Rizzo’s Reptiles, magician Simon Mandal, hip hop dance troupe Illstyle and Peace, magical comedy from Doc Swan, hoop wizard Jack “Blackjack” Ryan, the a cappella group 4Gotten Suitcase and a DJ from Elk Productions.
Board member Amy Goldberg said the evening will be “whole-family friendly,” with activities for children and for teens.
Sandi Goodman, board treasurer, served on the previous First Night board. The event was last held two years ago. “I wanted to help (the new board) get started,” she said, and First Night is a perfect way “to celebrate with family and friends.”
The estimated cost of First Night is between $25,000 and $30,000, according to Goodman, which includes insurance, security and promotion as well as the performers and activities. She said that volunteers help hold down costs.
“We need volunteers, especially the night of the event,” Goldberg said. Those interested in helping can volunteer by visiting the website at http://www.firstnightmwso.org/