FUNDRAISING AT VARIETY OF EASTERN TENNESSEE
Each year Variety looks forward to working with Regal Entertainment Group on what the Knoxville News Sentinel has described as “becoming Knoxville’s biggest annual star-studded charity event”.
SCREENING - JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH 3D
On June 24, 2008 Brendan Fraser, Josh Hutcherson and director Eric Brevig took time out of their multi-city publicity tour to attend a prerelease screening of "Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D" at Regal's Pinnacle Stadium 18 Theatre and IMAX. After the official proceedings ended, Fraser and Hutcherson lingered to pose for pictures and sign autographs. This was the sixth such benefit in as many years for Variety of East Tennessee and generated a record breaking $340,000.00.
SCREENING - TALLADEGA NIGHTS: THE BALLAD OF RICKY BOBBY
In 2006, Will Ferrell revved up fans with a special appearance at Variety’s “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby” benefit screening. As he stood on stage in the packed lobby of Regal’s Pinnacle Stadium 18, a fraternity of fans cheered on and chanted. Ferrell gladly played along joking he was going to only take half of the quarter million dollars raised that evening to benefit Variety.
Pictured at left: Will Ferrell with newscaster, Variety board member and benefit emcee Robin Wilhoit.
SCREENING - THE DUKES OF HAZZARD
In 2005, Regal Entertainment Group and Variety of Eastern Tennessee hosted "Dukes of Hazzard," with special appearances by Jessica Simpson, Seann William Scott and hometown boy, Johnny Knoxville. The red carpet hoedown drew over 1,000 ticket holders and hundreds more onlookers. By the time Johnny Knoxville made it to the microphone to speak to the hundreds of fans – including many family members and old friends – he was visibly moved. Local NBC anchor and Variety board member Ted Hall served as master of ceremonies. Mayor Bill Haslam welcomed Knoxville, Scott and Simpson to the city.
SCREENING - GOOD LUCK CHUCK
In 2007, Jessica Alba and Dane Cook proved to be good luck for Variety by attending the benefit screening of "Good Luck Chuck," which raised $260,000.00 for the charity. Variety has also raised funds with a “Radio” pre-release screening and a “Walking Tall” benefit with Cuba Gooding, Jr. and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson making special appearances respectively.
GOLF TOURNAMENTS AND RADIOTHONS
As well as the annual movie benefit, Variety of Eastern Tennessee raises significant funds with Golf Tournaments and Radiothons.
Pictured at left, Pro and PGA Champion John Daly plays to the crowd.
The Inaugural 2004 Golf Tournament at Gettysvue Country Club raised an overwhelming $80,000.00 net. Each tournament offers a full round of golf, terrific prizes, lunch and dinner. Variety’s Third Annual Tournament included a special treat: a gorgeous fall day with featured pro and PGA tour champion, John Daly, followed by a night with John Daly and Legendary Friends in concert at the Historic Tennessee Theatre.
Variety’s Radiothon partnership with WIVK and WNOX has raised over $250,000.00 for the charity’s “Kids on the Go!” program.
Recently, Variety of Eastern Tennessee introduced Young Variety, a group of 21 - 40 year old professionals who help raise funds for the charity, to the community. Already this dynamic group has co-partnered with other non-profit and media agencies to produce a Haunted House, Bristol at Regal and Daytona at Regal, a digitally downloaded opportunity to see a NASCAR race on Regal Cinemas’ giant screen at the Pinnacle 18.
CONTIBUTING TO LOCAL CHILDREN'S AGENCIES
In 2008 Variety donated over $350,000.00 to 30 local children’s agencies. We continued to be the largest contributor to Knoxville’s Imagination Library, Second Harvest’s Food for Kids program, Tennessee School for the Deaf’s after school sports program and The News Sentinel’s Empty Stocking Fund. We again underwrote Katerpillar Kids, a weekend camp for children who have lost a significant loved one in the past year. In total twenty-two agencies were given grants, some twice during the year.
Since receiving our charter in 2002, Variety of Eastern Tennessee has donated over $2,000,000.00 to East Tennessee children’s charities. The continued success of our movie benefits and Variety at Work programs has established Variety as an integral part of our community. Our hope is to continue to award these gifts to the community and remain dedicated to enhancing the lives of children.
Above: Abby Blevins and John Woods hand out bears at the buddy bear event. Below: Brendan Fraser with Brandon Wilhoit at our "Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D" screening.
Copyright © 2009 Variety - The Children's Charity, Variety of Eastern Tennessee. All Rights Reserved.