Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 3/15/16
From Press Release
On March 11th the HEADstrong Foundation rolled out the lime green carpet for an unforgettable evening as they presented the 6th Annual Lime Light Gala. A capacity crowd filled two ballrooms at the Hilton Philadelphia at Penn’s Landing and helped raise more than $225,000 to support the HEADstrong mission including the expansion of Nick’s House, a facility operated by HEADstrong that provides complimentary lodging and amenities for families displaced to the Greater Philadelphia Region for comprehensive cancer care, transplant and clinical trials.
To date, more than 59 families have called Nick’s House home. With an average stay of 6 weeks, Nick’s House saves families more than $10,000 in out of pocket expenses. Plans are underway to expand Nick’s House, allowing the organization to increase their generosity by more than 400%.
This year’s Lime Light Gala featured a five-star silent auction, a delicious dinner, a special live performance, an award presentation, which was followed by dancing. The event celebrated the life and legacy of HF Founder Nicholas “HEAD” Colleluori.
The sold-out audience was moved to tears with Swedesboro-Woolwich Little Theatre’s powerful musical interpretation of a scene from HEADstrong’ s children’s book entitled Laced Together which kicked-off the event.
Television personality, Marc Summers who served as Master of Ceremonies shared his personal journey with cancer and the rollercoaster ride of being misdiagnosed twice before finding his answer at the Abramson Cancer Center at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. Summers, who recently surpassed the 5-year remission mark, applauded the organization for their commitment to directly helping families by tackling the burdens that they encounter when seeking the best possible care.
Long-time voice of the Philadelphia Flyers, Lauren Hart as well as voice of the Philadelphia Eagles, recording artist, songwriter and pianist Jessy Kyle co-chaired the event. The singers, survivors and friends performed an inspiration duet which led into HEADstrong President and Nick’s Mom, Cheryl Colleluori’s powerful and emotional address. Colleluori’s speech focused on how HEADstrong is making a difference, RIGHT NOW. She addressed the critical role that HEADstrong serves in the lives of families all over the country. She shared real situations and struggles of families including her own. She pledged the organizations commitment to the expansion of Nick’s House and presented honorary heroes’ with financial assistance and received a standing ovation.
The 6th Annual Lime Light Gala honored Edward A. Stadtmauer, MD who serves as Chief of Hematologic Malignancies and Professor of Medicine at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. Survivor, Lauren Shermer shared her inspirational story as she was presented with the prestigious Nicholas E. Colleluori Award.
Following the award ceremony and dinner program, Marc Summers and Jessy Kyle got the crowd going with a live appeal that raised more than $21,027 in five minutes and the ballroom erupted in celebration when the fundraising thermometer shot passed the $20,000 goal.
“The Lime Light Gala was an incredible tribute that captured the spirit and heart of our Nick. On behalf of the HEADstrong Foundation, the Colleluori family and those we proudly serve we wish to extend our sincere appreciation to our amazing guests, honorees, sponsors, partners, donors, vendors, board, staff and everyone involved with making the 6th Annual Lime Light Gala an overwhelming success. The commitment, dedication and hard work surrounding the planning, the solicitation and the execution of the event was truly incredible. The atmosphere was so upbeat and positive. We wish to say thank you for believing in our cause and for being the difference, RIGHT NOW.” Said Cheryl Colleluori, HF President and Nick’s Mom