Last night I went to an amazing event at one of my favorite Cleveland haunts: The Greenhouse Tavern. The occasion was a blogger/twitter happy hour in support of Anissa Mayhew, a blogger many of us had never even met (and maybe had never even read before). But the fact is that Anissa (age 35) recently suffered a massive stroke, leaving her husband and 3 kids in limbo while she struggles to just breath on her own. She is a blogger, one of us – and she was in trouble. People around the internet have stepped up to help the Mayhew family during this time. And local blogging queen, Chef’s Widow decided that the CLE should gather to do something and Blog it Forward was born.
Widow had meet Anissa briefly while at BlogHer in Chicago this summer and, like many of us, couldn’t help but think “what if it was me?”. So she announced the gathering and 10 days later was an event nothing short of perfect. Social Media addicts from around the area gathered (I counted 33 at one point) for drinks and yummy, yummy eats with all the proceeds going to the Mayhew family. Anonymous donations of cash, a 50/50 raffle (organized by Cleveland’s A Plum), and additional cash from area businesses combined to the tune of ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS. $1,000 for a family in need, whose only connection to us is that she’s part of our community – awesomesauce!
It takes a lot for someone to walk into an event where you may not know anyone. It takes a lot to venture downtown if that’s not your thing. It takes a lot for someone to throw together an event and hope that people will show up. But last night, people did just that to honor and support Anissa and this awesome community became a little tighter.
I didn’t take my camera, but there are all kinds of photos (and write-ups) of the night around the net. I met several bloggers/tweeps (for the record – I HATE the word “tweeps”) for the first time, saw a handful I already knew and was introduced to several more. My reader grew with 10 new blogs last night; my Twitter feed, too. There were food bloggers, parent bloggers, beauty bloggers and social media addicts. You didn’t have to lower your voice when you said you were a blogger, people understood all the lingo and tips and tricks were swapped over crispy chicken wings and glog. To those people who think bloggers are pasty geeks who never go outside or can’t make friends in real life: you couldn’t be more wrong. This blogging thing – it rocks.
Oh, and I got to meet Iron Chef Michael Symon AND hear his trademark giggle/cackle. He’s a pretty down-to-earth and approachable guy. Much love to Amelia for helping me set up a photo with my two biggest chef-crushes – Symon and Sawyer – I was pretty giddy for the rest of the night!