On Thursday, August 29th, Northeast Opportunities for Wellness, Inc. (NOW) held the 2nd Annual NOW Bartender Night at the Putnam Lodge of Elks #574. The event raised a total of $9,000 to support youth wellness programs and scholarships for children living in the 10-town area of Northeast CT.

The Bartender Night featured six teams of four bartenders each, facing off in 30-minute shifts, competing to raise the most in tips. All teams were expertly assisted by Putnam Elks bartender Sharon Stewart.

From 5:30 to 6:00 p.m. “The Killer J’s” started the event with a strong lead of $1,388 and featured team members Jack Burke of J&B Transport, Joe Carlone Jr. of Linemaster Switch, Jake Dykeman of Putnam Ford, and Jeff Rawson of Rawson Materials.

At 6:00 p.m. team “Take it to the Bank” raised $672.50 with Lynn Bourque of Putnam Bank, Kevin Merchant of Jewett City Savings Bank, Maria Thomas of bankHometown and Elizabeth Zachow-Deary of CorePlus Federal Credit Union.

At 6:30 p.m. the “Legal Eagles” raised an impressive $1,277 with members Tom Borner & Kate Cerrone of The Northeast Law Center, Ed Higgins of Bachand, Longo & Higgins, and Madilyn Smith of Madilyn C. Smith Attorney & Rawson Materials.The 7:00 p.m. shift saw the highest team total of the night with $2,000.75 raised by “The Professionals.” The team featured Earl Rosebrooks of Fluid Coating Technology, Dick Loomis of the Loomis Team at RE/MAX, Jason St. Onge of The G Seven Catering Company, and Laurence Hale of Weiss, Hale & Zahansky Strategic Wealth Advisors.

$775.50 was raised by Jay Byrnes of the Byrnes Agency, Kristin Duethorn of Quest Martial Arts, Sheila Frost of the Courthouse Bar & Grille, and Gary Osbrey of WINY Radio, making up the team “Talented Talkers.”

And the final team of the night, “Keep Calm & Sell On” closed out the event with the second highest tips, totaling $1,578.25. The team consisted of Jeff Bousquet of Bousquet’s Appliance, Matt Desaulnier of Gerardi Insurance, Dan Salvas of The Putnam Elks , and Sam Stamatiou of Verizon WirelessZone.

In addition to the tips from each shift, the event also raised funds through a raffle drawing for several items donated by local businesses and individuals. NOW volunteers sold pizza-by-the slice, with 15 “giant” cheese pizzas generously donated to NOW by Giant Pizza.

NOW Executive Director Sarah Wolfburg commented on the event, “We are thrilled with the results of the 2nd annual NOW Bartender Night. We were optimistic that we would raise as much as the previous year’s event, but were once again blown away by the generosity of our community!”

All funds raised at the event will support NOW youth wellness programs in the region. NOW, a 501(c)(3) non-profit, is dedicated to making a positive impact in the lives of Quiet Corner children by ensuring each child’s access to wellness, including fitness, nutrition, and athletics. Serving the 10-town area of Northeast Connecticut, NOW partners with other local youth organizations to provide scholarships to children ages 3-14 who otherwise may not be able to afford such opportunities.

Following the Bartender Night, NOW’s next fundraising event is the 8th Annual NOW Road Race & Walk “Lap the Lake” on September 15th at The Lake Tavern in Dayville.