19th Give Kids A Smile: Free Dental Care For Children Through Age 12 From Nearly 100 New Jersey Dentists Feb. 1 – 28
21st Light Of Day Parkinson’s Disease Online Benefit Feb. 12 – 14 Featuring Joan Jett and The Blackhearts (and perhaps Bruce?) · Donate
Since 2003, the American Dental Foundation (ADA) has helped more than 5 million undeserved children with free oral health services through their Give Kids A Smile (GKAS) program. For its nineteenth year, the New Jersey Dental Association is taking a “bite” out of the covid pandemic by turning GKAS Day into a monthlong celebration! Nearly 100 local dentists have joined in, and having more than only day to choose from can’t help but make it easier!
Light of Day (LoD) Foundation founder Bob Benjamin, who has Parkinson’s Disease, has moved three times since the Covid pandemic began, including from an assisted living facility that suffered an outbreak. His partner, LoD festival director Tony Pallagrosi explains, “In this environment, the isolation is exponentially made worse because isolation becomes a way of living for everyone.”
That’s why the 21st annual Light of Day WinterFest, which raises funds in the fight against Parkinson’s and related diseases will go virtual this year with performances streamed from Friday, Feb. 12 through Sunday, Feb. 14 2021 on the LoD Facebook and YouTube sites.
Performances have been filmed in a closed Paramount Theatre in Asbury Park. The Feb. 12 broadcast will replicate the Light of Day show normally at the Stone Pony on the Friday of LoD weekend. The Feb. 13 broadcast features The Main Event/Bob’s Birthday Bash, streaming at 2pm and 7pm EST. The Feb. 14 broadcast will be a Songwriters by the Sea-themed show.
Over 60 artists are scheduled to perform, including Willie Nile, Jesse Malin, Steve Forbert, The Weeklings, Jeffrey Gaines, Glen Burtnick, Matt O’Ree, Stone Caravan, and John Eddie. Most noteworthy will be the first appearance of Joan Jett And the Blackhearts: she performed the song Light of Day while starring in a movie of the same name. The song was written by First Jersey Boy Bruce Springsteen, who has made surprise appearances in 12 of the previous 20 LoD benefits. Given the connection, could Bruce possibly pass it up this year? He and Joan performed it together in 2001, so stay tuned — and in the meantime, you can go online to donate or buy merchandise!