CD sales help Make-A-Wish grant wishesWritten by Danielle Stanton | | firstname.lastname@example.org
A visit to Walt Disney World, a chance to meet their hero or to be Batkid for the day — whatever a child’s wish, Make-A-Wish Foundation makes it happen. And because of a local benefit CD, more kids will have their dreams come true.
Toledo Free Press teamed with dozens of local musicians and media personalities to create a two-disc, 45-track collection of Christmas music and readings. All proceeds benefit Make-A-Wish Foundation, Ohio, Kentucky & Indiana.
The third annual benefit CD, “Holiday Wishes 3: If You Believe,” was released Nov. 23 during a kickoff concert in conjunction with the Christmas tree-lighting ceremony at The Town Center at Levis Commons.
Ten stores at Levis Commons as well as the management office will have copies of the CD for purchase. The locations are Blue Pacific Grill, Build It!, C Sterling Jewelers, Flying Joe, Lily’s, Poco Piatti, Salvatore Capelli Hair Spa & Beauty Lounge, Second Sole, Vivian Kate, Yankee Candle and the management office.
All proceeds from the $10 CD go to the local chapter of Make-A-Wish Foundation, which serves 21 counties in Northwest Ohio and grants about 65 wishes a year for children ages 2-18 who have life-threatening illnesses, said Development Associate Callie Cannon.
“The funds raised from the CD help us grant wishes,” Cannon said. “It’s a wonderful project. We’re really excited about this year. It keeps getting better and better every year.”
Since the first volume in 2011, the CD project has raised more than $34,000 for Make-A-Wish, Cannon said. Because all the proceeds go directly to Make-A-Wish, the CD makes a “big difference” in their ability to grant wishes, she said.
The CD project also means Make-A-Wish works closely with Toledo Free Press and that relationship is an added benefit, Cannon said.
“Overall, it means a lot to us to have a local presence and collaboration with Toledo Free Press,” Cannon said. “To have that connection makes a big difference.”
The CD’s producer, Michael S. Miller, editor in chief of Toledo Free Press and news director for 1370 WSPD, said he has no musical talent of his own, but relishes the opportunities to work with musicians and artists on the Make-A-Wish benefit CD.
“I love music” Miller said. “I have no talent for it. I can’t sing, I can’t play an instrument. … Getting those families the money, that’s why we do it, but on a selfish level, I enjoy working with these artists and collaborating.”
Miller said matching specific songs to specific artists is one of the great aspects of producing the annual CD.
“Imagine, for me, the chance to work with Kyle White or Ramona Collins or Mighty Wyte or Joel Zmuda — for me to ask them to consider putting their interpretation on a song, and they say yes,” Miller said. “Then to finally hear their songs and see that vision realized for a great charity is an ultimate sense of accomplishment.”
The benefit CD was born out of a project to digitize historical songs for libraries and universities. In 2008, Toledo Free Press collected old recordings from 78 and 33 1/3 rpm vinyl records and had them digitized for local libraries.
Miller said a follow-up project the next year that collected original songs written about the city inspired the idea for a benefit CD for Make-A-Wish Foundation.
The first year, Miller said he had to “beg, borrow and steal” to get artists to cut a track. This year he was overwhelmed with 80 artists who wanted to participate.
Miller started listening to Christmas songs in July to narrow the list down to 45 artists, he said.
“We could have produced a quality four-CD set,” Miller said. “And for two minutes, I actually thought about seeking a quote for a price to do that.
“As far as the creative side, I could not be more humbled that the artists spent the hours they did to put together this CD,” he said. “In terms of Make-A-Wish, I hope this is a project that can fund a lot of wishes for local families.”
Tags: 1370 WSPD, Blue Pacific Grill, Build It, C Sterling Jewelers, Development Associate Callie Cannon, editor in chief of Toledo Free Press, Flying Joe, Holiday Wishes 3: If You Believe, Kentucky & Indiana, Lily's, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Michael S. Miller, Ohio, Poco Piatti, Salvatore Capelli Hair Spa & Beauty Lounge, Second Sole, the management office, Vivian Kate, Yankee Candle