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News Apr 18, 2014 - 8:52:36 AM

STAR Walk, Roll & Stroll Includes Day at the Ballpark on May 4

By STAR, Inc., Lighting the Way

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The Boccuzzo Family of Wilton, Chairpersons of last year’s Walk (contributed photo)
Norwalk, CT - The 9th Annual STAR Walk, Roll and Stroll is moving this year to The Ballpark at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport, CT on Sunday, May 4, 2014. The Walk and Family Fun Day is a celebration and fundraiser to benefit individuals who have intellectual disabilities and programs offered by STAR, Inc., Lighting the Way. The O’Connor family of Darien will serve as Chairpersons of the Walk this year. Registration begins at 9:15 a.m. and the Walk kick-off is 10:15 a.m., with a walking route suitable for any ability (walkers, strollers, wheelchairs and baby joggers are welcome!). All attendees will receive vouchers for parking, lunch at the ballpark, a tee shirt and tickets for special seating at the Bridgeport Bluefish vs. Maryland Crabs baseball game being played after the Walk at 1:05 pm. Approximately 800 walkers and volunteers are expected to attend. The event benefits infants, children and adults with developmental disabilities and their families in Southwestern Connecticut who are served by STAR, a 501 (c)(3) not-for-profit organization since 1952.

Katie Banzhaf, Executive Director of STAR said, “Everyone at STAR is thrilled to partner this year with the Bridgeport Bluefish organization to bring our favorite family fundraiser to their dynamic location that will surely be a fun-filled outing for families. I can’t think of a better way to mark the start of spring than enjoying opening weekend at the ballpark while supporting our local people who have developmental disabilities.”

Laura Blair and Jenna Herbst of Westport with Miss Connecticut 2013 Erin Brady last year (who went on to become Miss USA!) (contributed photo)
Participation fee for the walk is a donation of $35 per person, with special rates of $20 for students 18 and under and $15 for children 12 and under. To obtain information about the Walk, please visit the STAR web site at www.STARct.org or call Megan Johnson at STAR at 203-846-9581 ext 339. Participants are encouraged to set up their own fundraising team for the walk by registering at http://www.active.com/donate/starwalk2014 to have a chance to win some unique experiences at the ballpark including:

· Throwing the first pitch of the game
· Acting as bat boy/bat girl for a game
· Behind the scenes tour of dugout and players’ locker room
· Private use of VIP 25-seat and 50-seat game boxes
STAR is still seeking corporate sponsorships to help underwrite food, tee shirts and parking for the event.

The STAR Walk, Roll & Stroll takes place each year with the help of hundreds of volunteers from Norwalk High School, Staples High School, Brien McMahon High School, BuildOn, Westport Y, People’s United Bank, Westport Fire Fighters, Westport Boy Scouts, ROTC and more. (contributed photo)
Bridgeport Bluefish General Manager Ken Shepard said, “The Bluefish organization is honored to be associated with STAR. As partners in our community we owe STAR a deep level of gratitude for their 60+ years of work assisting thousands of people with developmental disabilities. We are beyond excited that STAR has chosen to work with us so that we may host their successful Walk, Roll & Stroll event at The Ballpark at Harbor Yard.”

STAR, Inc., Lighting the Way is a not–for-profit organization serving individuals of all ages who have intellectual and developmental disabilities, as well as providing support services to their families. STAR creates opportunities for individuals to live full lives with independence, freedom of choice and personal growth by providing support, services and advocacy while informing and encouraging the community to recognize and appreciate the value of all individuals.

The Bridgeport Bluefish are members of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball and play their home games at The Ballpark at Harbor Yard. Inaugural members since 1998, the Bluefish have welcomed over 3-million fans to the ballpark in their 16 year history. The stadium is a great venue for family-friendly entertainment in a safe, fun atmosphere. For further information, call 203-210-BLUE (2583) or visit BridgeportBluefish.com.

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