Beacon Newsletter- Spring 2017

Posted - March 26, 2017

Fun While Fundraising!

The Harbor House has some exciting fundraising events to look forward to in 2017.

Join us for a fun-packed evening with the Rochester Knighthawks Lacrosse Club on Saturday, March 25, 2017.  The game starts at 7:30pm, but you will want to get there early to take advantage of $2.00 drafts and a live band.

If you have never been to a game, you won’t believe how much goes on during the evening. They have all sorts of contests and activities that take place during the game and breaks.  They do give-aways and contests through Twitter, Snap Chat and Facebook.  The Knighthawks are giving us $5.00 for every ticket that is purchased through the Harbor House link online.  Just go to our website: and click on News and Events to find the link.

You’re not going to want to  miss our new spring event – “Harbor House Rocks”  Come join us on Friday April 21, 2017 as  we rock out for the evening with some of Rochester’s most followed and fun bands.  We have even persuaded our very own Tom Arcara – heart transplant recipient and amazing drummer to play a few tunes!     “Haven’t you been dying to get to Anthology?  Here’s your chance to check out Rochester’s “place to be” for an excellent music experience.  Come have fun and do a good deed at the same time by supporting the Harbor House.  This event is going to take place on April 21, 2017 from 8:00PM-midnight.  There will be fantastic raffles, great local talent and many more surprises. You don’t want to miss out! Tickets will be sold by going to: or contacting a board member for tickets.  We will also have the link on our website.  Go to News and Events and click on the link.  Tickets can also be purchased at the door, but consider buying them in advance so we know you’re coming!!!

Make sure to SAVE THIS DATE!!!! September 23, 2017 it will be time for ATBGO 2017! Our annual fundraiser – “And the BEAT goes on…” will be held at a different venue this year. It will be filled with fantastic food, wonderful auction items, and some great ways to enjoy the evening, like our famous chocolate heart raffle.  Our host this year will be the lovely and amazing Maureen Maguire from Channel 8 News.  Scott Hetsko of Channel 13 News will be our live auctioneer.  They will undoubtedly add so much pleasure and excitement to the event. There will be so many ways for you to enjoy yourself that we are certain you will have a memorable and fun –filled evening.  Make sure to put Saturday, September 23, 2017 on your calendars today and tell your friends to do the same!

Thoughts from a Harbor House Guest

As   weary travelers, both with medical problems, Denise and I found warm, clean and safe harbor at the Harbor House.  Wow- what a relief it was for no
t only was it clean, warm and safe, but also and maybe more importantly, we found friends at the Harbor House that made us feel right at home right away.
Staying at the Harbor House was as refreshing as taking a nice cool drink on a hot summer day.  We are truly blessed to have found the Harbor House, not only did we find relief there, but now we have friends in Rochester.  That is a true blessing in itself.

-Richard McDonald

Love Stories From Harbor House

As many of you know, February was Heart Health Awareness Month. It is also the month that contains Valentine’s Day – the day we celebrate the love we have in our “heart” for others.

I don’t think it was just a coincidence that these two events happen in the same month. The heart keeps your body going and it is so important to know your numbers and do your best to take care of your heart. Love is also one of the essential elements of life that keeps us going.  We are all seeking to be loved in some way every day.

One traditional way to express love and a lifetime of commitment to one another is to marry. For many who choose this path, they vow to be true to one another in sickness and in health.

Love shines so bright in times of sickness. To witness amazing “love stories” one just needs to visit the Harbor House.

You will see women and men like leave for the hospital early in the morning so they can be sure to see the doctors on their early rounds. They go to help care for their loved one and to be their voice when they are too sick to do it themselves.

Those same people might not return to the house until the moon is high in the sky because they want to see their partner settled in for the night.

The mental fortitude  it takes to simply get out of bed and go be with a critically ill person  that might not even be aware of your presence is nothing short of courageous. Our guests think nothing of putting their own mental anguish aside and giving all of their love and energy to their sick partner. Only true love could inspire this kind of unconditional devotion in a person.

When these folks finally take a moment to rest and recharge, they need and deserve a place like the Harbor House. Because of our dedicated supporters, these families rest a little easier and have a place where they can truly relax.

The heavy financial burden of spending weeks or months in a hotel is removed from their over burdened mind. They often sit around the kitchen table and find small moments to enjoy with new friends they have made on this journey. Then when the next day dawns, they are ready and able to go back and face whatever lies ahead as they enter once more through the hospital doors.

I have witnessed these amazing “love stories” so often at the Harbor House, and I am truly thankful that in some way I can be a part of them. We really do make it possible for families to gather the energy and resources they need to deal with severe illness. We are making a difference in their lives, and that is something to be thankful for.

Amazon Smile

We always have wished we had a slot for loose change like people throw in at McDonalds for their houses. Now we do! You can help us every time you shop Amazon. Simply log on every time through and choose Harbor House of Rochester as your charity. Amazon will give us .5% of every eligible item purchased. Please share this with your friends – a little bit goes a long way! Click this link and start shopping!

Let’s Talk ABout Terrific Teens

Rochester is an amazing community to live in because volunteerism is considered to be an important part of life.  Many of our area high schools require community service hours for their students as part of their requirements for graduation.  How can you instill the fact that volunteerism should be considered an essential part of your adult life any better than to expose our children to it?

The Harbor House has been very blessed through the years to have students come to volunteer in order to fulfill their community service requirement.  It is easy to recognize the students who are here simply to get their hours in and what students embrace the opportunity and come out a better person because of it.

Selena Hun (left) and her cousin, Jenny Mathews, our Thursday afternoon “unstoppable powerhouse” team. Thank you girls, for volunteering at the Harbor House!

Today, I would like to introduce you to one of the most amazing teen volunteers I have had the privilege to know. I have watched this amazing young lady blossom and grow as a truly dedicated volunteer who knows she is an important part of our volunteer program. During her years here I have also witnessed her growth as an individual who has been well prepared to take the next step of her life as she graduates this June.

Selena Hun attends Rochester City School’s “School Without Walls”. They require each student to complete 75 hours of community service a year. Selena began volunteering at Harbor House as a Freshman. She has come faithfully every Thursday afternoon during the school year for the past four years.  I have watched her do whatever tasks were assigned to her for the day with a kind of dedication rarely seen in teenagers. As the years have progressed, Selena has come to know what needs to be done with very little instruction.  She will even stay past her required time if she is in the middle of a project. The reason is simple: she has taken ownership of the task she wants to see it through to a successful completion.  I have come to rely on her and truly look forward to our Thursdays together.

Not only has Selena been a solid, reliable volunteer, but she has even recruited more volunteers for our organization.  Her cousin, Jenny Matthews, is a student at School of the Arts and also volunteers here after school on Thursdays alongside Selena.  Together they are an unstoppable powerhouse.

This opportunity has been a learning experience for Selena. It has taught her to be a leader, to work independently, to make decisions based on her experience and how to have empathy for others who may be going through a difficult time.

One of my favorite quotes of all time comes from the 14th Dalai Lama: “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” School Without Walls is teaching their students how to “be the change”. I would like to thank them for having the foresight and the courage to help prepare their students for life by making volunteerism a top priority.

Supporter in the Spotlight

Many of you know and love Mary Crowley.  She is the weekend manager three out of four weeks a month at the Harbor House.  She is a dedicated, caring person whose life experiences have made her the perfect person to  have this role at the Harbor House.

She is also one of the most determined people I know.  She sets big goals for herself and refuses to ever give up or give in when the going gets tough.

This month is the perfect time to honor this wonderful woman as her 30th birthday is on February 27, 2017. It’s a big milestone in her life, but she also is celebrating another achievement that came from hard work and determination.  Mary just graduated from Empire State College with a Bachelor’s degree in medical journalism.  I have read some of her work and she really is a great writer.

Mary‘s plan is to work in the field of medical journalism while continuing at the Harbor House.  In my opinion, the best things that has come from the computer age is the ability to work remotely. Mary is seeking a permanent position as a medical journalist, but it can be based almost anywhere.

Please join with me in congratulating Mary on her milestones this month.  We are all so proud of you Mary. We are also very blessed to have someone of your skill level to be working at the Harbor House.  Best Wishes to you Now and always!

Adopt-A-Day Honorees

Date Chosen Reason Name


January 2017
1.12.17 In Honor of Linda Acker
1.13.17 In Warm remembrance of Patricia Guthrie
1.22.17 In Honor of Rob and Peggy Wackerman
1.24.17 To Celebrate Tessa and Harper
1.26.17 To Celebrate Marissa Chen


February 2017
2.5.17 In Warm Remembrance of Ron Fontana
2.15.17 In Warm Remembrance of Ervin Dean Johnson
2.27.17 To Celebrate Mary Katherine Crowley


March 2017  


Sponsored by the Joseph and Irene Skalny Foundation
3.3.17 To Celebrate Michael Chen
3.5.17 To Celebrate Anne Davis
3.5.17 To Celebrate Jeff Acker
3.9.17 To Celebrate Della Kochik
3.14 In Honor of The Schiller Family
3.16 In Warm Remembrance of Jennifer Linscott Tietgen

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Adopt a Day

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