, Newburyport, MA

June 24, 2013

Dear World/Dear Newburyport a beautiful success

Newburyport Daily News

---- — To the editor:

I am overflowing with gratitude and joy and want to thank the beautiful souls who participated in the Dear World/Dear Newburyport project. To the more than 200 courageous people and two dogs who showed up on June 8 to have their photo taken and to share their message with the community, thank you for saying yes. To the 70-plus businesses and individuals who supported The Actors Studio of Newburyport and this project with donations of funds, food, beverage and time, my sincere appreciation. Without you this project would not have been possible or as full of joy.

To Nicole Salemi, David Fortier and Charles Dolan, thank you for sharing the story behind your message to the packed crowd at City Hall Auditorium. The oohs, ahhs, laughter and tears of recognition said it all as the 155 portraits were revealed, deeper conversations were sparked and new friendships formed. To Dear World’s Robert Fogarty, thank you for sharing your gift. The responses were numerous and genuine, “it’s the best picture ever taken of me,” “he captured my spirit,” “there is not a bad one in the bunch.” It was a great night for community and ours is a generous one.

With heartfelt thanks to: Platinum Sponsor, The Institution for Savings; Silver Sponsors, Bob Connors, Cheryl Richardson; Bronze Sponsors, anonymous donor, Arlene and Jeremy Barnard, Chris Butler and Rick Guest, David Hall, Newburyport Bed & Breakfast, Newburyport Development; additional sponsors, Castagna Construction, Inn Street Barber Shop, Dolan Financial Services; our Event Partners —17 State Street, Andiamo Restaurant + Bar, Atria Merrimack Place, Arlene Barnard, Beach Plum Too, Blue Hotel Jazz Band, Rich Booth, Joel Brown/Boston Globe North, Aline Carriere, Chococoa Baking Company, Cook Bowe Communications, Dianne’s Fine Desserts, Domino’s Pizza, Eat Cake, Exit Dance Company, Susan Hern, Gretchen Hunsberger, Allyn Gamble, Greater Newburyport Chamber of Commerce, Lois Honneger, Ipswich Brewery, Chris Johnston, JC Lockwood/Newburyport Current, Astrid Lorentson, Loretta, Peter Matthews, Michael’s Harborside, Newburyport Farmer’s Market, New England Wine & Spirits, Nichols Village, Not Your Average Joe’s, Nikki Misenheimer, Oregano Pizzeria Ristorante, Panera Bread, Josh Paradis, Pentucket High School Jazz Ensemble, Ann Reily/Newburyport Daily News, Ted Ruetenik, Jack Santos, Deb Shapiro, Shaw’s Supermarket, Deb Szabo’s writing class students, Ten Center Street, The Tannery Marketplace, Taylor Rental, Kathy Weinstock, Jen Wright, WNBP, Donna Wilson, Kate Zwick.

And to Marc Clopton and the J team — Jeanette Isabella and Judy Mouradian — thank you from the bottom of my heart for your commitment to this project, for the 1000s of things, big and small, done with grace, from the countless planning meetings to the community outreach, for enrolling your families to ensure the events went off without a hitch, and for your humor. I so enjoyed working with you.

Julie McConchie

TASN board member & DW/DN project manager