It is amazing what just one person can accomplish when they put their mind to something. I am writing this letter for Erin Lipinsky (“Lipinsky Raises Money for Special Olympics,” Feb. 24–March 1 edition and “Brave Hearts and Warm Souls Take the Polar Plunge” in the March 16–22 issue of the Great Neck Record) to convey his thanks to everyone who supported his efforts in raising money for this year’s Town of North Hempstead Polar Plunge to benefit Special Olympics.
Erin participates with the Great Neck Spirits Special Olympics Team, and when he heard about the Polar Plunge because the Great Neck Alerts Junior Firefighters created a team, Erin decided he wanted to participate. He did what most participants do, he asked friends and family for donations. But, Erin did not stop there; he went into shops, banks, restaurants and businesses throughout Great Neck, Manhasset and Port Washington with flyers, donation sheets and his persuasive ways. All the more impressive considering Erin does not drive! His sincerity worked wonders and he ended up being the number one individual fundraiser for this year’s event.
He proudly braved the chilling cold that day and ran into the icy surf to prove his dedication to the cause and this year’s theme, Freezin’ for a Reason. While it would take too long to thank each individual who donated, Erin wants to sincerely express his thanks to the crew at the Village of Great Neck’s highway department for their daily support and assistance and to the following donors: in Great Neck, Willie’s Coffee Shop, Everfresh Supermarket, Lazar’s Chocolate, Marine Fisheries, Matty’s Toy Stop, Metro Floral United Floral, Miracle Mile Harley Davidson, United Floral, Jeff Deva-Toskana Pizzeria, Peter Schatel–Peter Luger’s Steakhouse; Villa Milano and TGI Fridays in Manhasset; and Amaranthus on Main, Humbolt & Beacon Pharmacy, Latin Gyros, Unleashed and Yummy Gyro in Port Washington. Special thanks also to Sandra Bass, Kathleen Cawley and Bank of America.
I hope that residents will see the names of their local businesses listed here and visit them more frequently. I had a hard time keeping up with Erin and his daily rounds to gather donations and I am sure I have missed some of the donor’s names in this letter, and for this I truly apologize. Please know all donations were greatly appreciated. Thank you all for your support. I for one am in awe of both the generosity of our local community members and of Erin’s never-ending spirit!