FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Gettysburg, PA, October 17, 2013 – The Gettysburg Optimist Club, a local service organization and proponent of bringing out the best in kids, is giving back to the community with a donation of $500.00 to The Big Brothers Big Sisters of York & Adams County.

Big Brothers Big Sisters has made a positive difference in the lives of children and communities across the country for more than 100 years. The organization is motivated by its mission and bound by its values, weCARE, to better serve the 200,000 children in its network today.

Aligned with Big Brothers Big Sisters of York & Adams County, The Optimist Club of Gettysburg has “Bringing Out the Best in Kids” since 1919.  “We are extremely excited to partner with the local chapter of the Big Brothers Big Sisters Program,” commented Kristopher Accardi, President, Gettysburg Optimist Club, and Big Brother. “They share a philosophy much like ours with the intent on meeting the needs of young people in communities worldwide.  We believe strongly that programs like this positively impact children who will go one to become leaders in our communities.”

To learn more about the Big Brother Big Sister chapter visit For more information on how to get involved with the Optimist Club of Gettysburg, please visit or call (717) 220-3416.


Pictured – left to right – New Member Frank Negro, Optimist President and Big Brother Kristopher Accardi, Community Program Specialist of Big Brothers Big Sistser of York & Adams County Elizabeth Hull, and Little Brother Keith Askins.


The Optimist Club of Gettysburg was proud to participate in the Gettysburg Halloween Parade Tuesday, October 22, 2013.  This year the club joined with the Big Brothers Big Sisters of York & Adams County. Participants dressed in Halloween costumes.  Some rode Scoot Coupes donated by GettyPeds of Gettysburg while others carried the banner and walked the parade route passing out candy.  Fun was had by all.

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The Optimist Club of Gettysburg will once again be participating in the Gettysburg Halloween Parade scheduled for Tuesday, October 22, 2013.  The Gettysburg Optimist Club has joined with the Big Brothers Big Sisters of York & Adams County for this years Halloween Parade.

Members and youth who will be riding Scoot Coups donated by GettyPeds of Gettysburg and will meet at their store located at 39 N. Washington Street (located behind the Flower Boutique) at 5:30 pm.  Riders will be fitted with safety apparel and be given operating and safety instructions concerning the equipment.

The event forms at the middle school.  Please plan to arrive no later than 6:30pm.  The parade will begin with a motorcycle escort at 7:00 pm.  The remainder of the parade units will step off from the parking area at 7:20 pm.

Participants are reminded to wear a costume in good taste and warm clothing suitable for the season.  We are looking forward to a fun filled evening.

A big THANK YOU to Gettypeds for their generous donation to the evenings event.

We started out the Optimist year with a good crowd at Mama Ventura’s.  The club hosted Liz from Big Brothers Big Sisters of York and Adams Counties who gave a great presentation about her organization.  She described the sign-up process and expectations for “Bigs” and “Littles”.  After filling out the initial paperwork a phone interview/orientation is conducted.  The program asks for 3 references and background checks prior to matching.  Once matched, the Big and Little pairs are encouraged to meet 2-4 times per month for a minimum of one year.  The average length of a match is 18 months, but there are several pairs that have been going strong for 3-4 years or more!  This is such a great program that children are calling up themselves just to be matched.  There are children currently on the waiting list, so if you or someone you know would like to be a Big Brother or Sister you can find more information at www.bbbsyork.orgThe winners of this summer’s trivia contest decided to give a donation to Big Brother Big Sisters of York and Adams Counties on behalf of the Optimist Club.  The plan is to use this money to recruit Bigs and Littles in our community

Keith, an 8th grader, who has participated in several Optimist-sponsored activities (and also happens to be President, Kris Accardi’s little brother from BBBS) prepared a wonderful speech for us.  He described some of the positive experiences he’s had as a result of Optimist activities which include: the Optimist basketball program, the Roads to Freedom project, classes through the Arts Council, the All-star Magic Show, and walking in the Halloween Parade.  Not only has Keith benefited from these programs, but he has also given back to the community by volunteer time to help coach some of the younger children in the basketball program and he carried the Optimist banner during the last Halloween parade.

Upcoming Events

Halloween Parade: We will walk with members of Big Brothers Big Sisters of York and Counties on Tuesday, October 22 (Rain date October 29).  Please line up in costume at the Middle School at 6pm!

As a result of our recent donation to the Boy Scouts of America, the club has been given eight tickets for members to use to attend a Silent Auction program on Friday, November 1st.  Please contact Craig for further information.

The Club will once again be ringing bells to collect donations for the Salvation Army.  A sign-up sheet will go around during the next meeting.

Christmas Party: Please mark your calendars for this great event which will be on Wednesday, December 11th at the Refectory.  Socializing will begin at 6pm with dinner served at 6:30pm.  We are optimistic that a special visitor will be attending to help spread holiday joy.

Magic Show: Tickets are being purchased and donations are already coming in.  The program date is set for December 13th at 7pm at the Lincoln Elementary School.  One lucky girl and boy will be going home with a new bike by the end of the evening!

Optimist Basketball: Matt will take care of the preliminary set-up for the basketball program.  Sign up dates TBD.  We are in need of members to help volunteer to coach this 8 week program which starts in January and runs through March, so please consider participating even if you can only make it out to some the Saturday practices.

The Annual All-You-Can-Eat Oyster and Shrimp Feed is scheduled for Saturday, March 8th at the Gettysburg Fire Hall.    We are looking forward to another great turn-out.  There is comfortable seating for approximately 225 people and this year members will assist with seating to utilize the space to its fullest.  Tickets for the event will cost $35.

A Calendar of meetings and events is in the works and will be distributed to members once it is complete.  Also members will find a separate email with the approved budget for the coming year.


Next meeting: is scheduled for Wednesday, November 6th at 6:30pm at Mama Ventura’s.

The Gettysburg Optimist and the Big Brothers Big Sisters of York & Adams County partner for this years Halloween Parade.  (Poem compliments BBS).  Report to Middle School at 6:00 pm October 22 in costume!  See you there.

The dark and dreary night calls,
Beckoning Bigs, Littles, ghouls and demons this fall…
You are hereby summoned to a Halloween Scare.
Come and join us if you dare.

Don’t be lame,
don’t be afraid,
creep, float or crawl to be in the
Gettysburg Halloween parade.

October 22
Is the date that beckons.
The fun begins at 6,
So, don’t pull any tricks.
Meet us at the Gettysburg Middle School
And bring your “LITTLE” ghoul.

So, come as a witch,
Come as a cat,
Come as a ghost
Cause Gettysburg is where it’s at!

Float like a ghost,
Fly over on a broom,
to Join Us for some Wicked Fun


Reminder: Optimist meeting tonight at Mama Ventura’s (13 Chambersburg St. Gettysburg, PA).  The meeting begins at 6:30pm.  Please allow yourself time to find parking.

Reminder: Optimist meeting tonight at Mama Ventura’s (13 Chambersburg St. Gettysburg, PA).  The meeting begins at 6:30pm.  Please allow yourself time to find parking.

The Optimist Club of Gettysburg is raising funds for its local service projects.  The club is now planning the 2014 Oyster Feed.  The event will take place on March 8, 2014 at the Gettysburg Fire Hall, 35 N Stratton Street, Gettysburg.

“Our Optimist Club’s number one priority is helping the children of this community.  Fundraisers such as this one are essential to putting all of our plans into action,” committee chair Wayne Hill said.  “With this fundraiser, we hope to be able to bring more projects to the children of the community who need it most.

Mark your calendars and watch the news for more information and ticket purchase in the coming months.



Reminder: Regular Optimist meetings will now be held at Mama Ventura’s (13 Chambersburg St. Gettysburg, PA).  A buffet-style dinner will be provided.  Our next meeting is Wednesday, October 16th.  Meeting start time is 6:30pm.

The Optimist Club of Gettysburg is sponsoring the All Star Magic Show on Friday December 13, 2013.  For more than 25 years the Gettysburg Optimist have sponsored the event with the funds going to support more than 19 Optimist, youth related programs conducted throughout the year.  Magic Show Chairman, Doug Miller has once again planned an evening that the attending youth and their parents will not forget.

Telephone solicitations began throughout the Gettysburg area this past week and complimentary youth tickets are being distributed to Optimist supporters and area organizations.  Hundreds of free tickets are available to area youth and $6.00 adult tickets will be available at the door the evening of the performance.  The All Star Magic Show will be held at the Lincoln Elementary School on Lefever Street in Gettysburg.  The show will begin at 7:00 pm and will conclude with one boy and one girl being presented a brand new bike.

Members who are interested in assisting the evening of the show should contact Doug Miller.