You’re almost as likely to find Dickie V on the streets of his
hometown as you would behind the microphone during hoops season! Learn about
Dickie V’s latest activities—from a scholarship event with the Boys and Girls Club
to a fundraiser in downtown Lakewood Ranch, there is never a dull moment when
Dickie V’s around Sarasota!
This morning I had the privilege and honor to open up career day at the Imagine Charter School in Lakewood Ranch. It was great sharing my words and thoughts to all the youngsters. I stressed to them the importance of chasing one's dreams and never, ever believing in the word "can't". After me, the kids were going to hear presentations from individuals from the police department, the fire department, and the medical field. It was arranged by Kristi Dyer Wade, the daughter of a friend of mine, Larry Wade.
Today I attended the ground breaking ceremony for Cattleman Road to be an entry to the Benderson Park Rowing facility. I spoke at the kick-off breakfast for the Florida High School Rowing Championships being held at Benderson Park. The facility is rated by many experts as one of the best rowing facilities in the world. Former olympic rowing gold medalist in the 2004 Athens, Greece games, Jason Read, was there today as well. Randy Benderson and his family have been so generous in bringing this incredible facility to our area.
I had a great time in Siesta Key supporting the local merchants with the sale of "Siesta Key University" merchandise. I can't thank Craig Mettille enough for his generosity towards the V Foundation, as he donated $10,000 in the fight against cancer.
I was honored to be the recipient of the Cancer Support Community's Stephen H. Goldman Keystone Award along with radiation oncologist, Larry Silverman. The award was presented at the 2011 Celebration of Hope Dinner at the Polo Grill in Lakewood Ranch, FL. Dr. Silverman and I were presented with the award for our extensive contributions and efforts to the fight against cancer in our local community. The Cancer Support Community is a wonderful asset to have in our area, as it serves patients, survivors and families in the Manatee and Sarasota region free of charge.
CLICK HERE for more on the evening
I had a fun night signing new copies of my children's book, Dick Vitale's ABC's and 1-2-3's, at Little Bookworms Bookstore on Main Street in Lakewood Ranch. All my proceeds from the sale of the book go towards the V Foundation for Cancer Research. I had a super time meeting the kids tonight and talking with the parents. Main Street was jumping as they had Music on Main going on as well. A terrific night!
My wife and I were the guests of Mike Martello, the President of Boar's Head, at the Van Wezel Annual Fundraiser. The Van Wezel is a performing arts center in Sarasota, and our community is fortunate to be home to such a wonderful center. The Annual Fund is a fundraiser in which all the proceeds go towards the Van Wezel and their numerous programs. The evening included a terrific dinner, followed by entertainment by Dionne Warwick. I can't thank the kind people from Boar's Head for including my wife and I on such a terrific night.
My twin 8 year old grandsons are participating in a basketball camp this week at IMG Academy in Bradenton, FL. It is being run by Andy Borman, former Duke basketball player. Andy and his staff at IMG do a terrific job teaching the fundamentals of the game, while making it fun and competitive for all the campers.
While I had a day off yesterday, I stopped by the camp to watch my grandsons. Andy asked if I could share a few motivating words with the campers while I was there. I was happy to do so. I spoke to them about the importance of working hard, having discipline and most of all, making good choices in their life, on and off the playing court. My grandsons had a blast at the camp, and improved many of their basketball skills.
I always have a great time talking with the many hoops fans that I meet at the various restaurants that I go to in the Sarasota area. The people are so friendly and kind and they love sharing stories about their favorite hoop team or player. I always enjoy answering their questions and signing autographs for anyone who stops by to say "hi."
One of my favorite days of the year is Grandfriends Day at the Out of Door Academy on Siesta Key where my five grandkids go to elementary school. It is a special day where all the children's grandfriends come and spend the morning with their grandkids and visit with them in class and talk with their teachers. I have five grandkids at ODA, one in Third Grade, two in Second Grade, one in First Grade, and one in PreK. My wife and I received an award from the school that morning for having the most grandkids at ODA! We spent time in each of their classrooms and saw what they were learning and what projects they were studying. Each class also performed their Holiday Show. My wife and I had so much fun watching the kids sing and dance to the Christmas songs! I am so blessed to have such a wonderful, healthy family. It is truly my best gift ever!
I always have a great time meeting with and talking with all the fans
that stop by The Broken Egg Restaurant in Lakewood Ranch and Siesta Key,
Le Colonne Restaurant in St. Armands Circle, and La Trattoria on Main
I have always enjoyed my time with the fans and hearing their stories
and answering their questions about college hoops. The fans are what
make college hoops so exciting!
What a fantastic day of championship tennis at the Lakewood Ranch MetLife Intercollegiate Tennis Tournament. First up was the women's final featuring Miami's Bianca Eichkorn versus Notre Dame's, Chrissie McGaffigan. I introduced the players to the crowd before the match.
Eichkorn played beautifully and proved to be too much for the Notre Dame sophomore. It was a great weekend for McGaffigan though and she has much to be proud of.
The men's final was a hard fought battle between local hero, Sekou Bangoura, Jr. and Arizona's Andres Carrasco.
The points were long and tough and in the end it was Bangoura pulling the match out in three sets. It was an incredible weekend of elite college tennis and i know everyone in the Lakewood Ranch community was so pleased to see such a quality event brought to our area.