Thursday, April 25, 2013

Our endorsement for Lehigh Valley's "Man of the Year"

Here at FireRock Productions, we've become accustomed to working with some fantastic men and women all around the Lehigh Valley and beyond.  And each year, in communities across the country -- including right here in our own back yard -- folks engage in a spirited ten-week fundraising competition to earn The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Man & Woman of the Year titles, by raising funds for blood cancer research.


No doubt, the 2013 campaign includes some amazing community and business leaders, but we're throwing our endorsement to one guy -- Billy Kounoupis.  Now, it's not just because he's putting frozen hot chocolate back on the menu at Billy's (though it's a definite incentive ;).  And it's not just because his Mindfreak Burger will actually blow your mind.  It's because Billy isn't just passionate about things like customer service, but also because he's active in the area, highly ambitious, resourceful and can absolutely help to make a difference in the lives of people suffering from blood cancer.

Billy and his fellow candidates will be raising money in honor of Sam Mackaravitz and Madison Arnold (pictured below), two young children from Emmaus who are currently fighting blood cancer and are the 2013 Boy & Girl of the Year.


How can you help Billy help Sam and Madison?

Go to http://www.mwoy.org/pages/lv/lehigh13/bkounoupis and donate through the fundraising page.  In addition, there are other ways to help listed at the bottom of Billy's blog HERE.

In closing, we encourage you all to donate like a mother.  A slogan we're sure that Billy himself would approve of.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Thank You, Amy... For Always Being YOU!

How many people in the Lehigh Valley have been touched, influenced, moved, inspired, educated, and/or led by Amy Burkett? We know we have! We are so grateful to know Amy and we are fortunate enough to have worked with her a number of times. We wish Amy all our best as she makes the move into a new and even greater leadership position at PBS WTVI in Charlotte, NC.  But, Amy, did it have to be so far away!? ;)

Really, though, we are sincerely happy for you and your family – and we know it must be nice for you guys to be closer to Disney! We know you are going to do even better things, Amy – you were born to lead and we admire what you do. Thank you for your support, guidance, encouragement and wisdom – for us and all of the Lehigh Valley; and thank you for always being YOU! Congratulations! Charlotte is gaining much having you as part of its community!

Rocky & Amy at the Chamber's Economic Outlook 2013
Photo by Sherry Clewell Photography
A new chapter begins
Moving on to new opportunities
Yes, change can be challenging
But how else would we grow
Understanding
Reaching for more
Kindness abounds
Embrace it
Teacher and friend
Thank you for everything

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Social Media Weddings: When Your Vows Go Viral


Raise your hand if you've seen it.  Newlyweds saying their vows, leaning in for the first kiss, and finally cutting the cake.  You look around and suddenly you notice your view is fully obstructed by a wave of guests that suddenly look more like a swelling sea of paparazzi -- iPhones, Androids and iPods aloft.  And 20 seconds later...

DING! Someone tagged you in a post.  Ignore the arched eyebrows from all the older family members and add this to your Timeline now.

Like it or not, the social media monster (shall we call him Tweetzilla?) has infiltrated the world of weddings, for better or for worse.  But is it a good idea? A bad idea? A get-you-annexed-from-your-brand-new-family-before-the-wedding's-even-over idea?

We fully admit we're suddenly lost in the crowd of traditional tweeters, enthusiastic iPhone photographers and frantic Facebook posters in and around the greater Lehigh Valley.  (Full confession: We're not on Instagram. Should we be?)  But we also realize some of these happy couples are sharing their first moments together probably wondering how in the world they could've kept their vows from going viral.

So remember this:
As wedding cinematographers, we're focused on a wedding video that will not just capture an image, but capture the emotion of your special day.  Why? Because it's the one thing we can control in the no-man's land of social-media wediquette we're still trying to learn.

/ˈwed e quit/
Noun
The customary code of polite behavior in society or among members of a particular group during a wedding.
(Full confession #2: We thought we made this word up. Turns out it's already in the urban dictionary.)

Kidding aside, we've all probably seen the blessing and the curse when it comes to I do's and status updates.  We're still not sure if it adds to the joy of the occasion, or detracts from the big day, so let us know what you think.  And in the meantime, check out this video for more on what we feel is FireRock Productions' high-end creativity, artistic style and the personal perspective we take to capture your special day. 


Full Confession #3: In case you didn't notice, not one electronic device was spotted in the making of this video.  That's because we made the guests watch one of those 'Silence Your Cell Phone' ads before they all took a seat.

Congratulations, Courtney and Adam! Hope you don't mind that what was probably not your first official Facebook wedding status belonged to us ;)

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

A note about Shane Burcaw and Laughing at My Nightmare

By now you may have seen this video about Shane Burcaw, which premiered on www.laughingatmynightmare.com last Friday.


Quite simply, this video is the story of how a positive attitude turned into the non-profit called Laughing at My Nightmare (LAMN). And all because Shane's zeal, his passion for life, and his love for his family and friends are too strong to keep quiet.

But more than that, because spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a genetic neuromuscular disease, is believed to affect as many as 10,000 to 25,000 children and adults in the United States, and therefore it is one of the most common rare diseases in this country. And through this Shane has chosen to live. He refuses to be defined by this disease. And he continues to look forward to the future with a vision for LAMN that sees far beyond these present days.

Shane Burcaw and friends
What we've learned about Shane, more than anything, is that he is abundantly blessed with family and close friends who have also become part of the journey. But we also realized that because SMA and its effects are part of Shane's story, they are now also part of ours. And we are committed to helping this non-profit venture become as vibrant and awesome as one of Shane's ever-present smiles. Occasionally, we'll be featuring 'bloopers' and outtakes of our time with Shane while shooting this documentary so you can experience his sense of humor and wittiness firsthand. We've also decided to donate $1 (up to $1,000) for every 'Like' of our Facebook page until Friday.

The intent here is not to guilt you into something. Rather, we are trying to provide a vehicle for a massive online community to act — whether you know Shane, whether you have been touched by his story in some way, whether you love someone who knows and loves him — however you stumbled upon this video and the story behind Laughing at My Nightmare, we want you to be able to help if you want to.

We hope that in the creation of this LAMN documentary, this blog post and our Facebook page, we’re able to offer you a very tangible way to support someone we are blessed to know.

Thank you for watching!