March 14, 2008
THE CITY SAVES SOCCER IN 2008!
From Salvatore ss. Fantauzzo...
As a founder of Saving Soccer LLC, I would like to personally thank all the individuals who helped save our beloved Rhinos in 2008.
Keeping this issue in the spotlight is what saved soccer and our team. We have so many people to thank:
SAVING SOCCER LLC.
My group of friends that spent endless hours and offered there hard earned money to save our team.
Tony and John Gabrielle from Marina Dodge, Luis Ribeiro and Dom Vieira from Dunkin Donuts,John Coraggioso from Salvatore's Pizza, Steve Stokes from Stokes and Visca & Company, Christopher Wilmot from Endless Wave Productions and Chuck Formoso from Ristorante Lucano for the use of his restaurant as our official meeting place.
Most importantly, I want to thank all our families who put up with us chasing our dream, even when it meant time away from those that we love most.
THE CITY OF ROCHESTER.
We all should be proud to know that our City leaders are just that: Leaders.
Mayor Duffy,Thomas Richards, Carlos Carballada. They are three great men that care about our City, and our beloved Rhinos.
THE USL LEAGUE.
Tim Holt spent endless hours to negotiate this deal and save soccer in Monroe County.
THE NEUTRAL SITE.
From early on we tried to secure a back up site in case the City and Bank couldn't come to terms.
Dan Mason and Jim LeBeau, Gary Mervis, Dick Beal, Bernie Iacovangello and James Bianchi, Nelson Cuppello and the MCC staff, Gary Tirohn and James Fichera. All of these gentlemen stopped whatever they were doing to meet and guide our team.
THE LOCAL MEDIA.
The media, unlike other in other cities, cares about soccer and the media keeping this story alive saved soccer.
Jeff DiVeronica, John Boccacino, Bob Matthews, and Scott Pitoniak from the D&C, Mark Gruba, Ray Levato, and Berkeley Brean from News10 NBC, Bill Pucko, Mike Hedeen, Leah George, and Casey Bortnick from RNews, Rachel Barnhart and Sean Carroll from 13 WHAM, Jecoliah Ellis and Matt Mollloy from Channel 8, the CW16 Morning Show, John DiTullio from Hot Talk 1280 WHTK, Bob Lonsberry and Brendan O'Riordan from 1180 WHAM, Andrew Battisti WYSL, WCMF morning show, , James Weise and Richard Jones from Kick This!, and Gene Battaglia and Ben Terchin from Hot Talk 1280 WHTK and all other members of the media that work on and off air.
For most of the above, yes this is there job, but meeting with them and talking with them, they truly cared about the future of our team. They all helped SAVE SOCCER
BLOGGERS AND SITES.
The media, the politicians, and everyone involved in this deal has been keeping tabs of all the various online information outlets.
Mark Pallo from the Rhino Pit, The Stampede members who run RhinosZone.com, Mike Moran from Rochestersportsfan.com, James Weise from SoccerSam.com, Ryan Whirty from The Pressbox Powertrip, and of course the most popular soccer blog in the country: Devo's Direct Kicks.
From all the Stampede members to all the Safari members and all you bloggers, Thank You.
THE DEAN OF SOCCER.
Alex Loj, The Dean of Soccer, has been 5 steps ahead of all developments since day one of our involvement. It's almost like he scripted this whole crazy story. I truly respect his hard work and behind the scenes support.
THE RHINOS OWNERS.
My friends Chris Economides, Steve Donner and Frank DuRoss. These guys are heroes to many of us
They risked it all to get us our own soccer specific stadium. Things didn't go as planned, but I commend them to have the courage and foresight to bring pro soccer back to Monroe county after a 15 year absence. The memories at Frontier we will never forget. The most successful team in the history of pro soccer in America from 1996-2005, we Thank You! I hope someday soon, with the help of many, we can rename the streets around PAETEC and pay tribute to these three men that risked it all for our game. A special thanks to Peter Bourne who helped keep this team alive over the past two seasons.
THE NEW OWNER AND THE RHINOS STAFF
Thank you to Rob Clark, Matthew Ford, and all the Rhinos staff who have worked so hard during these trying times. They have helped keep soccer alive in Rochester.
THE FUTURE OF THE RHINOS.
My group Saving Soccer LLC will do anything possible to help the new owner, Mr. Rob Clark and his team. We hope to meet with Mr. Clark very soon to share our ideas from trolley cars to vendors and our slogan BACK TO THE PAST FOR OUR FUTURE.
THE RHINOS PLAYERS PAST AND PRESENT.
Past players and coaches got us our stadium and developed an amazing fan base. We thank you for your dedication to our game. To the present players: thank you for all your support and the tradition shall continue.
This has been an amazing experience, I got to reconnect with friends I haven't spent much time with in years, I got to know several great people and I realized that my 30 years of effort into this game was worth every minute of it. Our city cares about the sport I love, so much. Thank you to all that called and emailed and offered support and money. I hope to keep our group SAVING SOCCER LLC together for future business or soccer ventures. I will continue to do Kick This! every Saturday morning with my three friends Devo, James, and Rich and I hope to be back with the Rhinos in some capacity. To all of you that helped in some way thank you for SAVING SOCCER in Monroe county 2008.
...FEEL THE KICK FOR LIFE!!!!!!...ss