Sunday, October 2nd, was a perfect day for a Walk on Long Island! 30,000 walkers came out to join us for the 12th Annual Long Island Walk Now for Autism Speaks at Jones Beach State Park, Field 5. They enjoyed the beautiful weather, great entertainment and fun festivities! The Walk Master of Ceremonies was Lea Tyrrell, Evening and Night Co-Anchor for News12 Long Island, accompanied by Honorary Walk Chair, Craig Allen, Chief Meteorologist for WCBS NewsRadio 880, who broadcast live interviews with Walk Teams from the boardwalk. To date, the Walk has raised over $1.3 million with more donations coming in daily!
Students from Oceanside Middle and High Schools opened the Walk with the National Anthem, then Gloor Na Gael Pipers led the way to the Walk Start. Entertainers throughout the day included the Swingtime Big Band, Robbie Rosen, contestant on Season 10 of American Idol, Charlie Dane, an amazingly talented 13 year old up-and-coming singer/songwriter and Fred Maloney, aka “The Human iPod.” Also performing were the 2010 winner of Bands Battling Autism, “Runnin on Empty” and the 2011 winning band, “Last Great Hero.”
This year’s Walk featured check presentations to Autism Speaks President, Mark Roithmayr, from North Shore Autism Circle for $100,000; the Weingard Foundation for $75,000; and T Off 4 Autism for $30,000. Local elected officials also attended the Walk, including NY State Senator Charles Fuschillo; NY State Assemblyman David McDonough and NY Senator Chuck Schumer, who stood at the Walk Start line with Mark Roithmayr and “high-fived” Walk Teams as they began the Walk.