PERFECT PHILANTHROPY: GOOD TIDINGS.
Last Friday I had a great San Francisco Giants-filled day! I had the special privilege of being invited to Lunch with Larry Baer, CEO of the Giants, in support of Good Tidings Foundation. I was introduced to Good Tidings Foundation by my friend Bridgette who is on the board and has had a life-long relationship with Good Tidings since her parents founded it in 1995.
A little bit about Good Tidings:
Good Tidings creates original projects and works in partnership with professional sports franchises, businesses and agencies throughout the region, leveraging resources in order to increase access to enriching opportunities by deserving youth. We design, fund and build projects that are maintained and programmed in perpetuity by school districts, recreation departments, or city governments. We believe that every child deserves to have the means to achieve his or her dreams regardless of financial status, ethnic background, religion, or region of living. It is the spirit of the holiday season that we were founded upon and that we look to emulate all year long. Most of our work is agreed upon the old fashion way…with a handshake.
As someone who comes from a family who absolutely loves sports, I understand first hand the transformative power of playing sports, being on a team, and learning important life lessons. The great work that Good Tidings does is so important to the individuals but also to the communities as a whole.
At the luncheon there were fifty people, so it was definitely an intimate affair. I loved learning more about Good Tidings and hearing the stories of others at my table who have supported Good Tidings for a number of years.
After the lunch I was pleasantly surprised to see Larry Baer jump up for a quick Q & A. Yes, guests could ask Larry Baer whatever they wanted. Hands shot up and guests asked questions about how they pick players, the importance of the team chemistry, and if there was any thoughts about moving the fences in to decrease the distance required for a home run.
And I had a question. I raised my hand and asked Larry Baer, "which seats do you think are the best in the house?" Everyone got a good chuckle out of that but I was serious. We happened to be going to the game that night and I wanted to see what his opinion was. He laughed and asked if I go to the games. I said yes, and I'm actually going to tonight in a luxury suite and I wanted to know if those seats were good! He laughed again and said that they built the stadium so that even the worst seat in the house was still a great seat and that it was basically a 41,00 way tie for the best seat!!
Larry was thoughtful in answering all of the questions and it was so special to see all of the guests excited about his answers. I mean, if you are a serious Giants fan the chance to ask the CEO any question you want is very exciting.
So that evening Jesse, Lillian and I headed to the ball park for the game (one of our previous visits here). We were fortunate to be invited to a luxury suite (I know, I find it funny that the first time I was in a luxury suite at AT&T Park I was 27 and here Lillian is at 15 months!!). Lillian loves to run around so I took her out into the hall and she ran up and down the hallway. We bumped into another baby and they were playing together. We also coincidentally bumped into my State Champ basketball teammate Jen and her husband when Lillian ran into their suite.
We were quite a good distance down the hall so we decided to head back to our suite. Lillian ran ahead to our suite and I remember turning the corner and seeing a big bowl of peanuts and thinking to myself, "oh yay- there are peanuts in here now" because someone had just brought a big bowl of peanuts out. I look up and yep. We are in the wrong suite. Not only are we in the wrong suite. We are in Larry Baer's suite. I kid you not. He is standing there and like any mother with a running toddler I apologize. Larry says, no come in! (I'm not making this up). And I said to him, "normally I wouldn't come in but this is such a funny story. I will. I saw you today at the Good Tidings luncheon and I asked you where the best seats are. So I guess these are the best seats?" We got a good chuckle and I met his lovely wife Pam and everyone was so sweet to Lillian. We left after a few minutes but we had a nice chat and I introduced him to Jesse and they talked commercial construction for a while.
This story is funny but I have to tell you things like this happen to me all the time. But now I am beginning to think I am passing my luck along to Lillian. I have always said she is our lucky charm! I cannot wait to see all of the fun things she accomplishes and the sports she plays!
If sports or the Giants are important to you please consider making a donation to Good Tidings Foundation. The work the Harper family does for the community is outstanding and we want to ensure that they legacy continues for decades.
Let the kids PLAY BALL! Donate here today!
A very special thank you to the Harper Family for having me!