Turn Off the TV—and Do Some Good!

Labor Day has passed, marking the unofficial end of summer. While most people get the blues about the shorter days and longer work hours, I say good riddance. Not only was this summer mostly a washout, summer is brutally boring when it comes to popular culture. Once the early movie blockbusters are over, there’s nothing but bad reality shows out there.

I say, bring on fall! It’s much better for pop culture. TV networks debut their new series, movie studios start rolling out their prestige movies, publishing houses switch from beach reads to the new Dan Brown, and theaters launch their new cultural seasons. There’s so much to see, do, and write about, as evidenced by the September issue’s Fall Arts Preview.

No doubt, you’re all going to be busy buying tickets, programming the DVR, and generally enjoying the fall weather. Before you completely stuff your calendar from now until Christmas, I urge you to set aside one day for public service: September 11.

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The nonprofit organization September 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance (yes, it’s kind of a mouthful) has a goal for everyone to “perform at least one good deed”—any one you choose—on 9/11. They’ve been carrying on this mission since 2002, but this is the first year that September 11 is a federally observed National Day of Service and Remembrance.

So, what can you do?

You can volunteer your time. The organization makes it easy by maintaining a database of projects in need of volunteers. You can look them up by location and interest here. (If you have a project and you’re looking for volunteers, you can list it on the website, too.) I did some quick searching, and there are quite a lot of projects in our area, including cleaning up the parks in Rye, helping kids improve their reading and writing skills in Elmsford, organizing a book drive in Valhalla, and more. Of course, if none of the ones here appeal to you, we’re sure you can always find your own projects with your preferred organizations.

You can donate $9.11. If you donate through the site, your money goes to September 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance, but I’m sure they wouldn’t mind if you donated $9.11 to your favorite cause.

You can share your plans. Good deeds are contagious, right? If you check the 9/11Day of Service message board, you’ll find tales of people planning to build houses, serve food, and adopt grandparents. Once you have your plans set, keep the ball rolling by letting everyone know what you’re going to do. You deserve to brag a little. They have little widgets so you can let the world know on Twitter and Facebook, too. We’d love to hear if you have any plans, too—especially if you volunteer at some great organization year-round. Let us know in the comments.

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If you take part now, you won’t feel so bad when you veg out in front of the TV watching a So You Think You Can Dance marathon in a few weeks.

Our Wine & Food Festival returns June 4-9!

Our Wunderkinds event takes place on May 23!

Our Best of Business Ballot is open through May 15!

Our Healthcare Heroes Awards event takes place on May 9!

Our Westchester Home Builders Awards take place on April 4!

Our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Forum is March 14!

Unveiled: A Boutique Bridal Brunch is February 25!

Our Best of Westchester Elimination Ballot is open through March 6!

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