I've been honored to help with a variety of fundraisers over the years.

I've hosted events for the Make A Wish Foundation and Riverview Center. We've done marathon broadcasts for our annual Radiothon events for the Children's Miracle Network. I think I've done just about every get dunked, shave your head, put a pie in your face fundraiser I've ever been asked to do.

So when Dr. William Intriligator, the Music Director & Conductor for the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra called me last fall he had something different in mind.

"How would you like a chance to conduct the symphony?"

At first I laughed. Me? A jeans and t-shirt guy? Holding that little stick and swinging my arms around?

He told me this is a fundraiser the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra has been hosting since the 2012-2013 season. According to the DSO website, twenty-three community leaders have participated and have raised more than $135,000.

So what do they do with the money? The Pursuit of the Podium supports a variety of initiatives consistent with the DSO's mission, which is to engage the tri-state community and enrich its quality of life through live musical performances and educational programs. They serve approximately 20,000 people each year.

While I don't pretend to be a sophisticated guy, I have heard the names Beethoven, Bach, Mozart and Chopin. I love music and while symphonies may not be my first love, I do like to think I'm a proud supporter of the arts. I think it's important to keep instruments in the hands of our kids and give them every opportunity to learn about music.

I could go on a grandfather-esque lecture about how kids are losing their hard work ethic, are overexposed to screens and are picking up too many video games instead of tools and instruments. What will happen to future generations?

We are very fortunate to have an incredible collection of professional musicians displaying their craft and inspiring future generations with the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra.

So this is the part where I ask you to consider giving a few bucks to the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra. I don't care if it's a few bucks or a few thousand. The arts are important no matter how little you can afford to give.

I am competing against 3 other like-minded individuals and I wish them all the best of luck in their fundraising efforts. Whoever raises the most will be announced at a DSO event on April 27th and will get an opportunity to guest conduct the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra at the free Summer Melodies concert at the Dubuque Arboretum on Sunday, June 28th, 2020.

So again, no pressure. But if you have a few dollars to spare you can donate at THIS LINK. Be sure to use my name in the drop down menu under gift information / type of gift so I get credit for my campaign... (Or again, support any of the contestants... it's cool!)

I'll be doing a few fundraisers between now and the end of April, so listen for other ways that you can help soon.

Sorry for the long read. Thanks for sticking with me and thanks for helping the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra.


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