'Rock the Moon' Event Brings in $20,000 and Counting

By: Nancy Smith | Posted: March 26, 2014 3:55 AM
The Moon

Rock the Moon -- an annual Tallahassee concert for Rock by the Sea charities -- this year raised at least $20,000 for the ALS Association and a number of children's charities.

"The final figures aren't in," said Beth Gosnell, who was in charge of the event, "but we're getting close now."

She said the Monday night concert and dance attracted 300 to 350 people to the Moon, among them lawmakers, lobbyists, business organizations, consultants, assorted state and party workers, and one gubernatorial candidate -- Nan Rich.

'We used to have fun nights like this all the time," lobbyist Rick Wilson told me. "After a hard day in committees, people would all get together here and let their hair down."

Sen. Jeff Clemens and the All-Stars Band performed a number of mostly '70s Beatles, Rolling Stones and similar hits, and, to the delight of the crowd, it was a little reminiscent of a Bruce Springsteen concert.

But before they did, the warm-up talent of Walker Webb, 13, and Will Hollimon, 11 who call their band W2 -- had the crowd up, clapping and dancing with their original songs. Webb is the singer and songwriter, Hollimon is the drummer. The boys' mothers are a former legislator, and a lobbyist who have known each other for many years. Read the bios of these precocious young artists.

Dave Bitner

Dave Bitner in 2010

Wendy Bitner, widow of beloved former legislator and RPOF chairman Dave Bitner, who died of ALS -- or Lou Gehrig's disease -- in 2010, was the mistress of ceremonies for the event. Rock the Moon also paid tribute to senator and long-time lobbyist Ken Plante, who is hospitalized and suffering from ALS. Plante received a lengthy tribute in the Florida Senate on opening day this year. The Senate officially named the Senate president's conference room after Plante.

Rock the Moon this year was sponsored by Clemens, D-Lake Worth; Sen. Jack Latvala, R-Clearwater; Sen. Nancy Detert, R-Venice; Sen. Greg Evers, R-Baker; Rep. Katie Edwards, D-Plantation; Rep. Dane Eagle, R-Cape Coral; Rep. Halsey Beshears, R-Monticello; Rep. Ray Pilon, R-Sarasota; and Rep. Jason Brodeur, R-Sanford.

Scott and Julie Carswell served as venue sponsors; Sunshine State News was proud to be media sponsor.

Other sponsors included the Florida Justice Association, which raised $4,000; Debra Henley, Paul Anderson, Gary Farmer, Troy Rafferty, Todd Copeland, Jimmy Gustafson, Paul Jess, Janet Mabry, Andreina Figueroa, Reggie Garcia, Albert Balido and Lori Weems.

Also, sponsoring were the Florida Chiropractic Association, Jan Gorrie, Ramon Maury, Florida Retail Federation, FCCI, Florida Professional Firefighters, U.S. Sugar, Isle of Capri, Community Based Care of Central Florida, Paul Sanford and Jane Hennessy, Jim Scott, Frank Meiners, AT&T, Ramba Consulting Group, TECO, Florida Construction Coalition, Larry Williams, Missy Timmins, SKD Consulting-Scott Dick, Century Link, Patrick Bell, Mixon & Associates, Jeffrey Sharkey, Florida Insurance Council, Wendy Bitner, Jim Rathburn, Magnolia Strategies-Jim and Sharon Spratt, Stacey Webb, Southern Strategies, Bob Levy, Cynthia Henderson, David Griffin Consulting and Jerry Paul.

Reach Nancy Smith at nsmith@sunshinestatenews.com or at 228-282-2423. 


Comments (1)

jennifer blackburn
10:35PM MAR 29TH 2014
What a beautiful way to remember my dad. He was such an amazing man and loved by many. He is dearly missed each and every day.

Leave a Comment on This Story

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.