The very first Simon’s Day was held at the World Cafe Live on Simon’s first birthday (October 21, 2006). At that event, 80 friends (adults and kids) listened to the music of Erin Flynn. We also had a mini-heart screening. We came together to remember Simon. A few years later, Simon’s Day became our annual fundraiser. We invited families, not just adults, to help us raise money to check hearts and save lives.
On March 13, 2012, we came full circle. We abandoned the fundraising component, and gathered families for an entertainment lalapalooza for kids, just because. We wanted to celebrate together. We wanted to remember Simon together. We wanted to raise awareness together.
At Simon’s Day, over 300 people gathered at the Ambler Theater to be entrained by the Great Holtzie (comedian), John Pizzi (ventriloquist) and Scott Alexander (magician). They danced with the Phillie Phanatic, who also got an ECG exam. The entered a heart art contest, got airbrush tattoos, decorated heart cookies and ate lots and lots of food. They watched basketball and concerts on the big screens. They met students that discovered heart conditions at Simon’s Fund heart screenings.
We’re lucky that we can take moment to just celebrate with families that benefit from our mission. Of course, we need to raise money to continue our good work, but for that day . . . Simon’s Day . . . we just smiled.