Saturday, February 6, 2016

Grief. It creeps up on me.

My grief.  It can come out of nowhere at all.  Really.  There doesn’t have to be a trigger.  There doesn’t have to be an anniversary, or a birthday, a special time of year or a certain smell in the air.  Sometimes, it just happens. 

I found this incomplete blog post as I was trying to organize the files on my laptop this morning.  This is one among many.  I still write to help myself, but I don’t always post what I write anymore.  I worry that it is often so sad - because that is when I need to write - so I try to be cognizant of that.  But when I got to the end of this one, it made me proud, and I want to share… 

August 2015:
Tonight I want to Daryl’s House for the first time.  For those of you who don’t know, Daryl’s House is a venue that opened up in Pawling just about a year ago, and it is a great place for enjoying dinner with incredible live music.  Daryl Hall started “Live from Daryl’s House” – a free monthly web show – in 2007, and he created this venue to give his favorite artists a place to play. 

Also for those of you who don’t know, I absolutely love to listen to live music with the exception of drum solos, which is a legitimate pet peeve of mine (even when it’s you, Tommy Lee!).  Anyway, it’s been a long time.  A really, really long time.  Ty getting sick changed everything in my life.  I still have yet to gain a lot of it back, and of course I’ll never be the same.  But tonight, I feel like I found a tiny sliver of my old self again.

So the Jason Gisser Band was going to play at Daryl’s House tonight.  Of COURSE I would be there despite the internal struggle I face any time I am invited to “go out.”  I got there, it was a beautiful summer night.  I was excited to be out with a signature martini in my hand, surrounded by a number of fun, lighthearted people.  We laughed, we ate and we danced in our chairs to some incredible music.  Some of my favorite songs were played (Angel from Montgomery by Bonnie Rait and Ramble On by Led Zeppelin) and I texted Lou to tell him how happy I was to be out enjoying this music.  By the time the Jason Gisser Band came on, I was downright giddy.  I had so much fun listening, watching, dancing, etc. 

Then I don’t know what happened!  I mean, seriously… W..T..F..???  I was listening to their encore performance, loving every minute of it, and all of a sudden I was holding him again.  My baby boy.  I relived the moment he was cradled in my arms as he gasped his last breath.  I watched the life leave from his partly opened eyes, and the pulse of his heart stop delivering a rhythmic throb from within his partly opened lips.  His beautiful face immediately went from looking “still alive” to looking… the opposite.  And there I sat, surrounded by people enjoying a great night out with great music, and somehow I didn’t cry.  Somehow, I didn’t run away.  I wanted to.  I even played it all out in my head in case I did need to leave in a panic, but thankfully, I didn’t.

I have decided, this very second as I reflect on what went down tonight that… Yes, I am STRONG!  Thank you, for all who have told me that over the years because I refused to believe it until just now.  I am fucking strong.  And Lou is fucking strong. And we are so lucky that we haven’t jumped yet, even though there are so many times we need to talk one another off the ledge.  I am thankful for a fun night out, that didn’t end with me fleeing in a panic.  XOXO. 


I miss you, Ty.  I love you so. I can't wait to see you again.  


Thursday, December 24, 2015

Coping with his absence at Crimpy time

Holidays are built on tradition.  They come with a host of annual rituals that stir up all sorts of long-term memories from as far back as early childhood (when I got a “Baby This N’ That” from Santa), and as recent as just last year (when I failed at cookie decorating).  I remember who gave me almost every ornament on my tree.  I chuckle every time I count the 11 “Baby’s First Christmas” ornaments we have for Ty, and only one we received for Gavin.  Sorry Gavin, it’s just a fact of life when you are not the first-born.

Then there are his ornaments.  The one he picked out when we were on our Make A Wish trip in Disney.  The ones where a bear holds a number for each Christmas he celebrated with us, but the numbers stop at “5”.  The ones that adorn his beautiful photos with sentiments such as, “always in our hearts,” and “Christmas in Heaven.”  I seriously don’t know how we survive tree trimming each year.  Every ornament I pull from the box stabs a bit harder and stings a bit sharper than the last.  Even the happiest of memories are juxtaposed with the reality of how much things have changed.  

Our house is decorated.  It is beautiful and festive, and if you didn’t know better it would feel oh so merry and bright when you walk through our front door.  But that’s because the extra stocking on the mantle goes unnoticed to most. 

This will be our fourth Christmas without Ty, and I can’t remember a single thing about the first Christmas without him.  Not one.  Gavin was 3 ½ years old, I know that, and he was probably just starting to take notice of the holiday magic, but I was too absent to witness any of it. My body was there, but my heart and soul were elsewhere.  I know we got a tree, but I can’t remember doing so.  I suppose we decorated it, but I can’t imagine how.   Slowly, I am trying to rebuild family traditions that honor Ty’s memory without being mired in sorrow.  But to be honest, I still find it pretty impossible.  I am much better at coping with his absence, but it doesn’t make it any less painful.  It’s just different now. 

We continue to hang Ty’s stocking next to his brother’s.  Each year it is too difficult to imagine placing it back in the box, yet seeing it hanging there every day is equally cruel.  I will fill it with his favorite candy from Santa Clause as I have done every year, but on Christmas morning it is a strange and uneasy feeling when we have to unpack it ourselves, and the candy sits uneaten in my pantry for months afterward until one day I toss it out quickly and without question in a moment of strength. 

I wonder what Ty would want for Christmas this year.  What pages would he be folding in his toy books?  He would be 8 years old, and I don’t know what his eight-year-old voice would even sound like.  So I playback his squeaky four-year-old voice in my head and I hear his giggle when he announces “Bow and Arrow!  Guns!”  He loved the rise it would get out of me. 

So this year I didn’t resist when I saw the totally awesome bow and arrow at the toy store (Nerf, don’t worry).  I bought it for Ty without question, and that secret was mine and only mine as I continued to walk the aisles and unload at the register.  Later in the week Lou and I were talking about how we can honor him on Christmas morning.  We decided that we will watch some of his home videos before opening presents (something Gavin may end up bringing to his therapist later in life along with a long list of other things), and we will wrap the bow and arrow as a gift for Gavin… from Ty.  I am pleased with this.  I hope to give Gavin a gift “from Ty” every year from now on.  Something that is meant for Ty, but equally fun for his little brother to play with in his memory. 

Christmastime, 3 years old.  Ty pointing to the present he wants to open.  Look at that smile!

When I was searching my photos over the years, I relived the holidays from 2010 - 2012 and for the first time it occurred to me how blessed we were with having truly wonderful, happy, magical Christmases.  Easter, on the other hand, was always the worst.  Christmas was our most joyous holiday, he was feeling good and happy as can be.  Every Easter he was so sick, and endured such suffering.  Reflecting on this now, I find it so very poignant.

This time of year I am reminded of the reason for the season, but as much as I love and trust in God, I will never be able to stop asking, “why?” I used to pray to Mother Mary with such passion, and her statue at the church always looked at me with sadness and above all, sympathy.  Her eyes told me, “I know, I watched my son suffer, too.”  But they never told me, “it will be okay.”  I searched her face for reassurance.  I begged and pleaded.  But I never saw anything but, “I’m sorry.” 

When I cried to her I would tell her that I’m not strong like her.  That I can’t bear to lose him and if I had the choice to save all of mankind or save my son, I would choose my son.  Because that is how selfish I am.  I should be embarrassed by that truth, but there is no pretending when it comes to prayer.  I had no choice but to lay it all out there, admit I am flawed, and beg for my son to be cured.  I never prayed for anything so hard in my life. 


I don’t ask God for anything anymore, because it hasn't worked out for me.  I have vowed to simply trust in God and stop asking.  Instead, I say a prayer of thanks every night. Even on my worst days, I am grateful for my family, and for the time I had with Ty.  I'm grateful for my Christmas memories with the best good boy in the whole wide world.  I’m grateful for the roof over my head and the food on my table.  My son suffers no more, and I know that.  I am coming to terms with living this life without him.  I value my time here on earth, I adore every minute I have with Gavin, and I absolutely love what we are doing at the TLC Foundation – my happy place.  And when my time comes, I will have the greatest reward waiting for me.  It is that truth that keeps me going.  Merry Crimpy everybody.  XOXO.  
  

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

The Long and Winding Road that Leads to a Cure

It's been three years since we first opened our doors at the Ty Louis Campbell Foundation. I was so raw with grief and so angry about losing Ty to cancer, that this nonprofit became my lifeline. I lived and breathed fundraising and dove head-first into learning the landscape of childhood cancer research. I reached out to every other childhood cancer nonprofit I could find, and made connections with the parents and the game-changers. It is no secret that I believe collaboration is key and we will make more progress, faster, if we work together.  

It has been a journey in itself - a long and winding road that has consumed my life in the same way cancer did 5 years ago - but this journey has the greatest reward imaginable at the end of the tunnel. If, in my lifetime, I witness a little boy like Ty who survives his diagnosis thanks to safer, more effective treatment options - the TLC Foundation will have achieved everything we set out to do.

There is no place that I love being more than right here in this office. Ty is all around me here - he is a part of everything we do.

Meet Riley - Our First Guest Blogger!
Riley is a young girl in our community who was inspired by Ty's story. She launched "The Blue Lollipop Project" in his memory as a means to help children with cancer. For her Bat Mitzvah Project, she fundraised for the TLC Foundation and continues to support us to this day. I recently invited her to visit the research lab at The Children's Brain Tumor Project/Weill Cornell, and she got to meet Dr. Sheng Li, the Ty Louis Campbell Fellow, along with Ty's neurosurgeon, Dr. Greenfield. I asked her to post our first guest blog about the experience, and her words touch my heart.

"What I thought was already a meaningful experience became so much more. I was given the opportunity to see where my efforts through The Blue Lollipop Project have gone. On November 13, I got to visit the Weill Cornell Medical Lab for Pediatric Cancer Research. The first thing you see when you walk into the lab are pictures of seemingly healthy children who have all passed away from cancer. At first glance I felt happy, thinking that these were pictures of children who had survived, but as my gaze went to the bottom of the photos I quickly realized each one had a birth and death year. My heart stopped for a second as I processed this. It was very emotional seeing all of the kids pictures on the walls knowing that they had passed away, but at the same time it made me feel hopeful knowing that the parents of these children are so strong as they help the lab to try to save other children while mourning their own. Before going to the lab and meeting the researchers whom my project funds, my understanding was that the money I raised went to the TLC Foundation and then from there to funding multiple pediatric cancer research facilities. After going to the lab, I really made the connection between what I do and it's affect on others. I got to meet the doctor, Dr. Sheng, that the TLC specifically funds. Dr. Sheng developed some technologies for pediatric cancer research that are used all around the world. I found it so cool that the person that The TLC Foundation funds has done this. It's truly amazing what can happen when people come together for a single cause. 

This time of year I am so thankful for a multitude of things including my involvement with the TLC Foundation. I hope that people realize what the TLC Foundation does and how the funding is directly used to fund pediatric cancer research. I am so grateful that I got the chance to see the lab and meet the researchers. It is so inspiring what they do! Thank you, Mrs. Campbell for sharing Ty’s story and always inspiring me to do more."


-Riley


Sunday, November 29, 2015

Traditions

The Campbell's are pretty big on traditions, and the holiday season kicks off a slew of them that starts with picking out our Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving.

Lou has never been the “wait until the last minute” type, or the “Charlie Brown Christmas Tree” type.  He has some OCD tendencies which means I benefit from his heavy lean toward neatness and perfection.  He is the only man I ever picked out my very own Christmas tree with, back when we lived in our first apartment in Brooklyn.  It was beautiful and absolutely flawless, just as every tree has been thereafter.  One thing I learned quickly, though, is that no matter where I hang my ornaments while trimming the tree, they are likely to be moved to a “better” spot at some point (drives me absolutely crazy to this day!). 

Both the apartment in Brooklyn and the house in Long Beach were tiny.  We had to pick out modest, narrow trees that we could tuck into a corner of our already crowded living room.  So when we moved into this huge house in Pawling, we started a new tradition of chopping down a giant tree at the farm. The bigger, the better.

We have one room with 12 foot ceilings that we named “The Christmas Tree Room” even before we bought the house, because we knew it wouldn’t be used much aside from hosting the tree each year.  We moved in just a few days after Thanksgiving, bringing Ty to his new house straight from a month-long hospital stay.  He never got to say goodbye to the old house or to Long Beach, but he adjusted quickly and had love-at-first sight when we walked him into his new bedroom covered in superheroes. 

As you know, this community welcomed us with warm hearts and open arms.  One such individual in the community was/is Mike Sincair.  Mike owns a Christmas tree farm in Union Vale – right up on Walsh Road near the world-famous ERJDAT Christmas Light display.  Every year he allows us to come to the farm when it isn’t otherwise open to the public, so we can take our time and pick out the perfect tree in privacy.  Our first two years, Ty wore his Santa hat and eagerly picked out our tree as I carried him around the farm. These past 4 years, we walked onto that farm with a pit in our stomachs and lead weighing down our hearts – sighing big to catch each breath.  We look up into the sky and let Ty’s spirit guide us to the tree.  We keep up the tradition as much for Ty as we do for Gavin. 



Four years.  I had to pause after writing that and recount on my fingers with Lou because it is so hard to believe this will be our fourth Christmas without the best good boy in the whole wide world. 

Mike’s supply of 12-foot trees has diminished over the years, but he said he had one that was ours if we wanted it.  We looked out onto the farm and spotted it immediately.  A beautiful 16-foot Balsam Fir that rose high above the rest!  It was reaching toward heaven.  We did our due diligence and explored the rest of the farm, just in case, but there was no doubt that it would be our tree from the second we saw it.  It was undeniable.  As always, Ty made it clear what he wanted for “Crimpy.” See the enormous one in the back? Towering over the others?   Pretty obvious, Ty.  Thank you.  Gavin gets to cut down his own tree, too, for the den.




Each year, Mike bakes more than 4,000 cookies to share with his customers at no charge.  You read that correctly – 4,000+ cookies, and they are delicious.  When we walked into his shed in search of his stash, we saw Ty’s photos adorning his bulletin board.  Front and center.  His kindness is unmatched.  Like so many others, Ty truly touched his heart.  He let Gavin drive the tractor, he put the tree on his trailer and drove it all the way to our house when it wouldn’t fit on the roof of our car, and he left us with dozens of cookies to enjoy afterward.    


I purchased two potted spruce trees that we put out on the porch, and as I placed it on the step there was a giant ladybug crawling in the very spot I wanted to put the tree.   I brought Gavin over to show him, but by the time I looked back the ladybug was gone.

If I told you about the Christmas Tree tradition yesterday, it would have been a tear-filled story.  Grief is funny like that.  Trimming the tree was an impossible task, every ornament holding a memory and longing that is impossible to bear sometimes.  Yesterday I teared up all day, I sulked, I decorated, I stopped, I decorated some more.  I drank too much “egg nog” in an effort to escape.  But this morning, I woke to a beautifully decorated home and my heart is at ease.  He is here in this house and he is happy that we continue these traditions.  His tree is pure perfection, and I am pleased. 




Saturday, October 17, 2015

"I am free and so are you"

On this very night three years ago, I took Ty’s temperature for the umpteenth time and it read 104.9.  Under his shirt and his back were burning up, yet his face felt cool, his hands and feet warm but not burning with fever.  I knew what this meant, but I swear in my heart I still held on to hope that he might recover.

He had been asleep for hours on end.  I spoke to his doctor, we talked about how the only way to try and diagnose and treat the fever would be to bring him in – but we wanted him home.  We promised we would never take him back to the hospital again, and no matter how desperate I wanted to believe that he would wake up the next day, I also knew that he was so close to dying, any attempt to save his life would be in vain.

I was up early the next day.  Ty still sleeping peacefully in my bed.  No sign of waking.  I remember saying to my mom, over coffee, “if he doesn’t wake up soon, I don’t think he ever will.”  To actually hear myself say those words, it was like someone else was speaking them.  I was so torn between wanting to believe in his miracle, and knowing that he was leaving us.  It felt like such a betrayal to admit what I knew to be true; to say it out loud like that.  But still I prayed.  I still hoped that somehow, he would wake up and speak to me.  That he would spring back to life and we could praise God for his mercy. 

I still hope and pray for that impossible dream to come true every single day.

As the day went on, his breathing changed.  It was hard to watch.  Each breath slow and quiet, but with each inhale his face looked strained - as if it was taking every bit of energy left in his body.  I wanted so desperately to talk to him.  I thought about whispering and telling him how much I loved him and how it was okay for him to leave us now… but I just couldn’t.  It wasn’t okay.  As much as I truly wanted him to be free, I couldn’t bear to let him go. 

The minutes rolled by and nothing changed.  I never told him, “it’s okay,” but when the minister came and prayed for our boy in the room with Lou and I, it was as if we all understood the finality of that prayer.  I thanked him and walked the minister to the door.  Upon re-entering the bedroom I saw Ty wake up for just a moment and I ran to him yelling to Lou, “Oh God, I think he’s dying. Can I hold him, I want to hold him?”   I pulled him into my lap and Lou wrapped his arms around us both and we just cried and told him “I love you” over and over and over again.  His eyes were open but staring off into the distance until they slowly closed again as he took his last few breaths.   That was it.  Just like that he was gone.  

Recounting that moment is one of the most difficult things I do.  Whether I relive it in my mind on sleepless nights, or write about it here… the act of remembering these details makes me so sick with grief.   I can’t breathe, my chest hurts, and my head feels like there is a giant inflated balloon causing the most unbearable pressure inside.  But, it is important and I think it is healthy for me to do this.  Tonight, I want to remember every single minute of my last 24 hours with him.  Tomorrow morning we will polish his statue and talk about how impossible it is to believe we have survived 3 years without him.  

There is a beautiful little boy named Kwesi who passed away soon after Ty.  He was eight years old and he told his mother upon leaving this world, “I am free, and so are you.”   

I think I hear him saying it in the whispers of the wind every now and then, and I hope Ty and Kwesi truly are free to soar!  I love the image I have of them feeling truly light and free.  It makes me happy. 

And although we may be free from the pain of watching our boys suffer, his mother and I will never, ever be free from the pain of losing them.    This grief will live with us forever, and I carry it with me as a reminder of my loss.  I have a love/hate relationship with my grief because it keeps my pain raw, it keeps the memories of my son close, and it inspires me to work so hard to some day change the outcomes for children like him. 

We hope you will continue to think of Ty and follow our families journey.  Thank you for your love and support.  Three years.  Where did they go?



Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Back to School Blues

I have had so much on my mind, it’s been several weeks that I’ve wanted to get some of it out on virtual paper and I am happy tonight to find the time.  I have had a hard few weeks, for so many reasons, not the least of which was Back to School.  Ty’s time of the year is upon us… the memories of the day he was born, the hazy September days where we were ripe with fear post-diagnosis, the day we drove home from the hospital knowing we would never return, and the day he died in our arms.  The perfect weather that September and October brings is forever filled with these memories. 

I look at Gavin, a first grader who already rolls his eyes at me and knows just how to get under my skin when he wants to, and I see a boy.  Like I always say… where did my baby go?  I never had a big boy before.  Ty was the older brother, but still he was a baby.  He needed me so. 


I’m not suggesting that Gavin doesn’t need me, but it’s not the same anymore.  It’s just so different. I love our “grown up” conversations and that he can put his shoes on by himself, but I still bend down to help him every time.   I’m in no rush for him to tie his own shoes, or lose his first tooth – but I know it will be any day now.  My purpose, the Mommy in me, is slipping through my fingers.  I look to see if he needs more water and I see that he already helped himself to a glass when I find him glued to his tablet.  When did he even learn to play Minecraft?

It all happened so fast.  And I missed so much of it.  Most of my memories of Gavin from the time he was 18 months through 4 years old, especially the first year after losing Ty, are a complete blur.  I have loads of pictures and videos to remind me, but I was so helplessly consumed with caring for Ty before becoming a walking zombie as I navigated my grief that first year; I didn’t get to experience much of being Gavin’s “Mommy” until now – and he already calls me “Mom” instead. 

When I put Gavin on the bus for his first day of first grade, I was bursting with love and pride.  When Tony (the bus driver) opened the door I was so relieved to see his familiar face and I knew Gavin would be in good hands.  I was happy.  As the bus pulled out of sight I began walking down the block to my house and suddenly I felt Ty with me.  I imagined his spirit over my shoulder, as I often do, and it broke my heart into a million tiny pieces.  I wanted him to get on the bus with his brother.  I wished he could have a first day of school so badly.  My entire body suddenly weighed a thousand pounds and I dragged myself home, crying loudly down my quiet, empty street.  Who cares if the neighbors look out the window?  I was hurting.  I sat on our date bench forever.  I looked up into the sky as I always do – and I tried to replicate the exact vision Ty had when I last held him there.  

On a beautiful October afternoon, three years ago, I sat Ty up on my lap and held his head in my hands as I pointed to the sky.  I can see every detail of his face in that moment.  His green eyes were so bright in the sun, and the tiny brown speck visible in his right eye.  His skin was utterly flawless and his hair felt like fine strands of silk between my fingers.  His stare that day was so distant.  He was leaving me.  Even at that very moment I felt he was preparing to go.  His eyes were gazing into the distant skies, with just a few leaves from the hovering birch trees blocking his view.  Whenever I sit on our date bench, I tip my head back and try to imagine what he saw.  What could he have been thinking about?  Was this vision pretty enough for his last time outside?  It hurts so much to go back to that day. Just writing about it makes it harder for me to breathe. 

When I find myself it this desperate place, where the only thing I long for is a “do-over,” I try to think of all the incredible signs I’ve been blessed with over the years to assure me that there is so much more to this life, and that whatever it is, it is beautiful.  It is pure love, and there is nothing more perfect.  He taught me the true meaning of love at first sight and if I could have a million "do-overs" in this life, I would choose him over and over and over again.  


Recently, a great friend of ours told Lou and I a great story about Ty’s ladybugs.   

First a little background… When we lived in Long Beach while the boys were young, we owned a great little beach house on the corner where the back was our home and the front was Lou’s chiropractic and PT office.  Since we moved, the therapist who occupies the space has expanded the office and now uses what used to be Ty’s room for treatments. 

Our friend has been going for physical therapy and ended up in “Ty’s Room” for treatment.  She noticed a ladybug in the room and mentioned it to the PT.  He responded by telling her that there are always ladybugs in that room.  Always.  Of course there are, right?  I never saw one when we lived there, but then again, that was before Ty became magic.  Before he started sending them. 

XOXO.  Thank you for caring enough to check in on me and my family.  Thank you for loving Ty and remembering him with me.  


+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++


Endless Summer!  Today may be the first day of Fall, but we aren’t ready to say goodbye to the beach just yet!  Come to the Luau on Saturday – it’s going to be an absolutely beautiful day in Long Beach – brought to you by Ty Campbell!    The forecast says 71 degrees with full sun.  Skudin’ Surf will be there with the mechanical surf board, the raffles are outrageous (check Facebook to find out about absentee bidding), the authentic hula dancers and music/entertainment will keep the kids busy, and the food from Brother Jimmy’s is downright delicious.  Please say goodbye to summer with one last day at the beach – Ty’s favorite place in the world.   CLICK HERE.






Sunday, August 2, 2015

The Power of Yes - It's what Mess Fest is all about

Before I jump into the magic of Mess Fest and how much we have planned for this year to make it bigger, better and longer than ever... PLEASE check out our page on Thunderclap and join the campaign by allowing access to your Facebook and Twitter so we can spread the news about Mess Fest far and wide.  It is so important to help bring our cause and our event into the spotlight.  

Speaking of spotlight... I posted an article to Huffington Post just the other day all about the Power of "Yes" and why we created the Mess Fest.  I hope you'll read it and share it with your friends.

This quick snapshot represents just some of the children who will be honored at Mess Fest on Saturday.  They are the reason why we spend the entire summer planning for this day.  We hope you will help us help these kids while enjoying a ridiculously fun afternoon.


Most of you can't possibly understand how incredible it feels every time I see a Muddy Puddles photo posted to my wall, the TLC wall, in an email or submitted through the Muddy Puddles website. When Ty died, I immediately started to panic about how we can make sure his life is remembered.  It is so important to know he made a difference, not just to me but to the world around him - that we are not the only ones who are still thinking of him all the time.

Well - even after all this time - the photos keep on coming, and the people keep on joining us each year to play in the mud at Mess Fest.  That, my friends, is a LEGACY, and it is so incredibly comforting.  It represents the beauty behind all of the pain of his loss. Lou just said to me, "Ty was never here to see the Mess Fest," and I reminded him that Ty created the Mess Fest.  Of course he has seen it.  He is the largest presence at the camp that day, and anyone who has attended would agree.

To honor Ty's legacy our planning team has vowed to make this the best Mess Fest yet.  In memory of Ty and in honor of all the children who have ever/will ever battle cancer, this day is sure to be everything a child could dream of.  We added an extra hour to the agenda (11 - 5PM) so you can spend the entire day, or if you have other plans you can squeeze in both because you will NOT want to miss this.  What else is new?:

  • A GIANT Slip n' Slide - 40x100 feet - you've never seen anything like it
  • Hydraulic Trampolines
  • The "Geronimo" Bungee Jump
  • The Morgan Stanley "Slopstacle" course featuring color run powder and foam pits
  • Inflatable Twister
  • The Velcro Sticky Wall
  • Junior Bubble Soccer and Inflatable Bowling
  • The Nest and SkyTower playgrounds (brand new)
  • Candy Cooking Class in the Kids' Kitchen
  • The Trading Post and Jewelry Station
  • GAGA
  • The Gymnastics Pavillion
  • Karaoke and more...

So please: Get your tickets, join our Thunderclap campaign, it's not too late to do the Dirty Dunk and we have a couple more days to fulfill our Amazon Wish List.  It's almost here!!  

www.messfest2015.eventbrite.com