She Sang the Anthem

Last year, I experienced this really surreal day.  A day that started with me hanging out with some really talented artists and ended with me capturing their experiences at the Cincinnati Reds’ batting practice (which was also attended by Charlie and Martin Sheen.)  [Link, if you wanna revisit]

This year brought another one of those amazing days.

Saturday, August 3rd was the 2nd Annual Madonna Jam Benefit concert, which featured performances by: Josh Reedy, Brian White, Karyn Williams, and Eliot Sloan.  Who is Madonna?  She is a sunny little girl with Angelman’s Syndrome, an amazing heart and a beautifully HUGE smile.

To further honor and benefit the Angelman Syndrome community, the following day was ASF day at the Great American Ballpark.  And to sweeten the deal even further, Karyn Williams was invited to sing The National Anthem before the start of the Reds game.  And I got to tag along for her experience.  Teehee!groupgroup1madonnagroup2karynKaryn posted this video of her day.  Check it out!

It was pretty awesome!  Unfortunately, the Reds lost that day, but I guess you can’t win ’em all.

Special Thank You! to the entire group for inviting me along and once again subjecting themselves to my shutter.ty

Batting Practice with the Musicians

I am going to start out this post with a bit of information.  Angelman Syndrome is a neuro-genetic disorder that occurs in one in 15,000 live births.  My Mother’s best friend is a Mom to one of the 15,000.  She had a little girl, named Madonna.  And since the day she received the diagnosis, Penny (Mom) has been giving everything she can to Madonna and doing anything she can for the Angelman Syndrome Foundation.  Each May, my family participates in the Angelman Syndrome Walk in support of the research and the many families that have Angel babies.So, how does this have anything to do with batting practice?  Well, this past weekend, Penny organized a benefit concert in honor of her daughter.  Named “The Madonna Jam,” the concert featured Eliot Sloan (from Blessid Union of Souls,) Regie Hamm (singer/song writer,) Brian White (singer/song writer,) and his wife Karyn Williams (Christian recording artist.)  Brian White and Eliot Sloan are from the Cincinnati area and both are HUGE Reds fans.  So as a thank you to everyone, Penny arranged for tickets to Saturday night’s Reds game and the full VIP batting practice experience prior to it.  Enter Lindsey!

From Left to Right: Brian White, Karyn Williams, Eliot SloanMy “job” was to meet and hang out with these amazing people (camera around neck) and follow them throughout the afternoon.  Unfortunately, Regie became ill and was unable to join us.

We gathered in the Marriott hotel’s lobby at Covington Landing and walked to the Great American Ballpark from there.It was HOT and very sweaty, but we all made it across the Roebling Suspension Bridge and into the stadium.  We were treated to an en route tour of the underground GABP tunnels.  We saw where the club house and media rooms were.  Then we were led up the stairs and onto the field. Our “viewing area” was just to the left of the Reds’ dugout and just off of the grass (no touching the grass.)  The children that were in our area were treated to the occasional ground ball, which would ultimately end with a few of the player’s autographs for their new collection.  We were told that we were not to interrupt a player, however if they approached us, we were more than welcome to chat. Have you met Todd Frazier? Hanging out with these incredibly talented individuals for several hours made my day; but to then have the opportunity to meet some of Cincinnati’s hometown heroes was an amazing experience!  Along with Todd Frazier, I had the opportunity to photograph Dusty Baker and Bronson Arroyo.  And then, because apparently all of that wasn’t awesome enough, Martin AND Charlie Sheen just happened to be enjoying batting practice with us.  Seriously?!So, yep it was a pretty spectacular day!Penny (the Mom who made it happen) and Your’s TrulyFor more information, please click on the following links: