Bicentennial fundraising starts strong
By Bill Yelenak, Record-Journal Staff

MERIDEN � A committee organizing the city�s 200th birthday celebration has raised $45,000 after major contributions from three members.

Castle Bank and Trust Co., the L. Suzio York Hill Cos., and the Record-Journal Publishing Co. each pledged to donate $15,000 toward the bicentennial celebration, committee fundraising co-Chairman and Record-Journal Publisher Eliot C. White announced Tuesday. Castle Bank CEO and President Lawrence M. McGoldrick and York Hill Vice President Ric Suzio are co-chairmen of the Bicentennial Steering Committee.

The three companies are the first to be designated members of the 1806 Founders Club. The fundraising committee, headed by White and Greater Meriden Chamber of Commerce President Sean W. Moore, expects to send 20 to 25 more letters out to area corporations by the end of the month, asking them to donate.

�We�re pretty confident we�ll get at least 10, maybe more,� White told steering committee members at a meeting Tuesday afternoon.

The three large donations mean the committee will only need to raise $155,000 more to meet its goal of $200,000. Committee members believe reaching the goal should not be a problem, they said Tuesday. The committee, which also has a $250,000 commitment from the city, plans to spend a total of $450,000 on the birthday celebration.

In other business, Michael Buccilli, a member of the Greater Meriden Chamber of Commerce�s Leadership Class, proposed a contest in which residents can submit to the organization what they like about Meriden in 10 words or less. The best 200 �Meriden Points of Pride� will be incorporated into a poster with the bicentennial logo. Buccilli hopes the poster will be ready in time to show off at the Daffodil Festival as a way of promoting the city�s 200th birthday celebration.

�I think it�s a good idea,� Suzio said. �We would like to have the opportunity to proof it at the end.�

McGoldrick added he believes it could be a �very worthwhile project.�

The committee unanimously gave Buccilli its blessing to proceed, pending final approval by the committee when the project is finished.

To contribute your Meriden Point of Pride go to the chamber of commerce Web site, at, or mail your entry to the Literacy Volunteers of Greater New Haven, c/o The Meriden Public Library, 105 Miller St., Meriden, CT 06450. All entries are due by Monday, Jan. 27, for consideration.

(203) 317-2231

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

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