Chronically disabled, terminally-ill children receive red-carpet sendoff to Disney World

Ace & T.J.’s Grin Kids depart from Concord-Padgett Regional Airport

CONCORD – Keith and Tammy Proctor learned their about-to-be newborn son had heart defects before he was even born. Doctors said that Rhys Proctor would never be a normal child.

The parents were asked about potentially terminating the pregnancy, but the Proctors weren’t going to give in.

Rhys is a flourishing 10-year-old child who is attends Hickory Grove Christian School in north Charlotte.

He’s had two open heart surgeries, two cath labs and way too many tests.

Rhys will always have a heart defect, according to Tammy Proctor, but that doesn’t prevent him from living a full lifestyle.

On Wednesday, Rhys and 19 other children who are chronically disabled or terminally ill took off with their families to Orlando, Fla. for an all-expense-paid vacation to Walt Disney World.

The once-in-a-lifetime trip is part of radio personalities Ace & T.J.’s Grin Kids.

“This is very surreal,” Tammy Proctor said. “When we found out, I actually argued on the phone that I thought they were punking me.”

The Ace & T.J. Show is a nationally syndicated radio show based out of Charlotte. Locally, they are on 96.1 FM from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. on weekdays.

They have hosted Grin Kids for 20 years.

“Watching the magic of Disney through these kids’ eyes and these families’ eyes, who have never experienced anything like this, it is really special and makes it all worthwhile,” Ace said.


A Magical Send-Off: Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids Departs for a Dream Vacation

A Magical Send-Off: Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids Departs for a Dream Vacation
20 families depart for Walt Disney World

Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids, a Charlotte-based charity founded by the Ace & TJ Show on HITS 96.1, is having a send-off event at Concord Regional Airport on January 22 to celebrate their 20th annual Walt Disney World Trip. This year, 20 children and their families will embark on a trip of a lifetime to experience the magic of Disney. The event will include fun, family-friendly activities such as face painting, mascot meet-and-greets and photo booths. Concord Mayor William C. “Bill” Dusch, local police officers and firefighters, other area dignitaries and local mascots including Sir Purr and Hugo are scheduled to attend.

For more information about Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids, visit www.grinkids.org or view their media kit.

WHAT: Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids Send-Off Celebration

WHEN: Wednesday, Jan. 22
                 Arrivals: 9:45 a.m.
                “Meet the Families”: 10 a.m. – 11 a.m.
                 Families board aircraft: 11:15 a.m.

WHERE: Concord Regional Airport
                    9000 Aviation Blvd.
                    Concord, NC. 28027


• On-camera interview opportunities with Grin Kids co-founders and HITS 96.1’s personalities, Ace and TJ.

• Potential interview, photo and video opportunities with Grin Kids families and other area dignitaries.

• Video and photo opportunities of Mayor Dusch offering a welcome to the Grin Kids families.

Julie Parrotta
(704) 625-2194

About Grin Kids
Since its establishment in 2000, Ace and TJ’s Grin Kids has taken more than 520 terminally ill and chronically disabled children and their families on an all-expenses paid trip to Walt Disney World. Each vacation includes air travel, ground transportation, Disney Park Hopper passes, meals, hotel rooms at a Disney Resort, character meet and greets and Disney Dollars for souvenirs. Funded entirely by listener donations through nationally-syndicated radio show, The Ace & TJ show heard locally on HITS 96.1, corporate donations and fundraising events, Ace and TJ’s Grin Kids continues to enhance the lives of children in their listening areas with this family trip.


Thank You ADFA Nutcracker Benefit

Please take a LOOK at these amazing kids (not all the kids are pictured) Every year they work super hard for their ADFA Nutcracker Benefit performance in December all while raising an ENORMOUS amount of funds for our Grin Kids and their families. Thank you to each and every one of those precious faces, their dedicated parents, dance teachers & staff, and supporters! The Ace & TJ Show.


Bet on Blakeney Charity Event Set for September 15

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (August 16, 2018) – Roll the dice, practice your poker face and get ready to have a ton of fun during Blakeney Shopping Center’s 2nd Annual Bet on Blakeney charity event, benefiting Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids. After the smashing success of last year’s first ever Bet on Blakeney event, Blakeney is bringing back the magic and raising the stakes for round two, set to take place Saturday, September 15, 2018.

The Bet on Blakeney festivities will run from 6 to 9 p.m. as guests kick things off with a wine walk, visiting their favorite Blakeney Shopping Center retailers throughout the Village Green area. During each stop, participants will receive a sampling of select red, white or sparkling wine, as well as a stamp on their Bet on Blakeney card. Exchange a completed card to receive ‘casino dollars’, used to play a variety of games under the main tent. At the end of the night, exchange chips for raffle tickets and enter to win a variety of gift baskets. Every dollar helps in making this magical vacation possible for children who have only dreamed of a trip to the Happiest Place on Earth.

A $20 donation to Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids will give participants access to the event, casino games and a sampling cup for the wine walk portion of the event. Prize packages include gift cards from various Blakeney Shopping Center retailers such as Harmony Salon & Spa and Smile Labs at Sola Salons. To sample wines, guests must be over 21 years of age.

Find additional event details on the Bet on Blakeney Facebook event page. Get social with Blakeney Shopping Center before, during and after the event on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.     

About Blakeney                   

Operated by Northwood Retail, an affiliate of Northwood Investors, Blakeney Shopping Center is an open-air shopping, dining, and entertainment destination for residents of Ballantyne and the South Charlotte area. The neighborhood center features national retailers and award-winning boutiques and restaurants. Notable retail tenants include Harris Teeter, Starbucks Coffee, Banana Republic, Old Navy, bluemercury, Chopt, Zoës Kitchen, and more. Visit www.shopblakeney.com.

About Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids

Established in 2000, Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit providing a magical, all-expense paid, 5-day experience at Walt Disney World for children between the ages of 5-12 who are terminally ill or chronically disabled and their immediate family. Every dollar helps in making this magical vacation possible for children who have only dreamed of a vacation to the Happiest Place On Earth!


Greg Pearce Named to Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids Board of Directors

Greg Pearce Named to Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids Board of Directors

Mooresville, NC (May 29, 2018) – Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids announced today the newest addition to their 2018-2019 Board of Directors with the appointment of Greg Pearce.

Pearce is Vice President, Life at Financial Independence Group and an Investment Advisor Representative of Alphastar Capital Management. He brings over 15 years of insurance and marketing experience to independent financial advisors all over the United States. Pearce specializes in helping successful advisors dramatically increase their life insurance production through one-on-one consultation and coaching.

Pearce’s extensive experience covers nearly all facets of the financial services industry – from life producer and wholesaler to investment sales and marketing. By leveraging his expertise and FIG’s vast resources, Pearce’s partners are able to spend more time in front of their most valued clients and prospects and less time with back office issues. Pearce currently holds the FINRA Series 6, 63 and 65 licenses, CLTC designation, along with state licenses for life, health, variable products and long-term care.

Pearce has longtime ties to the NASCAR community and was formerly the Director of Marketing of the NASCAR Racing Experience and owner of Racing Grafix. During his tenure, Pearce worked with many non-profit and charitable foundations including Garth Brooks’ Teammates for Kids, the Jimmie Johnson Foundation and Doug Herbert’s B.R.A.K.E.S.

“Kids have always had a special place in my heart and to see the magic in the eyes these Grin Kids is truly amazing,” states Pearce. “I am thrilled to have the opportunity to work with a firstclass organization and look forward to helping give these kids and their families a once-in-alifetime experience.”

“Drawing on his years of experience in sales and marketing, as well as the nonprofit community, Greg will provide fresh insights into our board as we continue to transform and grow our charity,” said Liana Weller, Executive Director of Grin Kids.

As a graduate and former lacrosse player at the University of Richmond, Greg is passionate about the Spiders and coaching youth sports. Most weekends, when not volunteering for Grin Kids, Greg can be found on a court or a field somewhere in the Southeast either coaching or cheering on his two daughters.

The 2018-2019 Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids Board of Directors are: Co-Chairman, Ritchie Beams; CoChairman, David Cannon; Treasurer, Even Krysa; Tonya Watts; David Keech; Jason Newsome; Greg Pearce, and Haley Stutzman.


Ace & TJ’s Grin 2nd Annual Karting for Kids is Back!

Clich Here to Save the Date and Reserve Your Spot!

Ace & TJ’s 2nd Annual Karting for Kids – Tuesday, May 8th, 2018
Our endurance karting challenge that takes place May 8th, 2018 at GoPro Motorplex with Ace, TJ and their special guests. Each group will consist of teams of 2-7drivers, with a minimum of 7 required driver changes throughout the race. Prior to racing, all teams will be briefed on the format for the event, along with a few tips on how they may want to approach strategy ahead of practice and the race itself.
During practice, teams will have 45 minutes to get comfortable with the track and the karts, as well as practice driver changes and determine who will drive which stints. The race will be 90 minutes long, and driver changes will take place at predetermined intervals. The team that completes the most laps wins! A podium awards ceremony for the top 3 teams will be held after the race.
Each Team and Individual reservation includes:
• 45 minutes of practice and qualifying.
• 90 minutes of racing action.
• Dinner provided by a local Charlotte eatery.
Event Timeline:
• 3:00 pm – Pre-practice sessions will be available. ($20 each session)
• 4:30 pm – Driver’s meeting
• 5:00 pm – 45 minutes of practice and qualifying.
• 5:45 pm – Dinner and a word from Ace, TJ and a very special Grin Kid.
• 7:00 pm – 90 minutes of racing action.
• 8:45 pm – Victory Lane ceremonies.
The INDIVIDUAL ticket includes admission for ONE person to drive in the endurance race (main event) and in the pre-race qualifying round.
Individual ticket holders will be combined with other individual ticket holders to form one seven person team. Team participants will not all be driving at the same time. There is only one kart per team. The Endurance Race format is designed to employ strategy and driver switch outs.
The ENDURANCE TEAM package will consist of teams of 2-7drivers, with a minimum of 7 required driver changes throughout the race. This package includes admission for UP TO SEVEN individuals to drive in the Enduro race (main event) and in the pre-race qualifying round.
Contact us for information on Sponsorship Availability.
**Prices increase April 1st!

Thank you for supporting Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids and joining us in our #GivingTuesdayCLT campaign! With your donations, and the incredible support from Aaron’s, Inc – The Carolinas Division, Sun Up Cafe, and Rock Bottom Brewery and Restaurant, we were able to raise over $10,000. This will allow us to provide 24 seats for our incredible Grin Kids on our 2018 Grin Kids Express headed to Walt Disney World in October, 2018!


Smashburger Park Rd Presents Check


Wow!! Our friends at Smashburger, Park Rd location presented an $8,500.00 check from their “Pay What You Want” fundraiser on Sept 26th. They’ve been an INCREDIBLE partner & their generosity is unmatched! We’re looking forward to many more opportunities to work with them again!


Giving Tuesday Results are Here!

Giving Tuesday Results are Here!

Thank you for supporting Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids and joining us in our #GivingTuesdayCLT campaign! With your donations, and the incredible support from Aaron’s, Inc – The Carolinas Division, Sun Up Cafe, and Rock Bottom Brewery and Restaurant, we were able to raise over $10,000. This will allow us to provide 24 seats for our incredible Grin Kids on our 2018 Grin Kids Express headed to Walt Disney World in October, 2018!


Grin Kids Are Ready to Make Lasting Memories

Ace & TJ’s Grin Kids Are Ready to Make Lasting Memories at the 18th-Annual Walt Disney World Trip
Families to embark on once-in-a-lifetime all-expenses paid vacation

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Sept. 18, 2017) – Ace and TJ’s Grin Kids, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charity designed to enhance the lives of terminally ill and chronically disabled children, will embark on magical vacation at Walt Disney World from Oct. 4 – 8, 2017.

This year, 32 children between the ages of five and 12 will enjoy the five-day all expenses paid trip to Walt Disney World along with their families. The Grin Kids are scheduled to depart Wednesday, Oct. 4 from Concord Regional Airport at 2 p.m. EST, where the Grin Kids will participate in a fun, family-friendly sendoff to celebrate the special day. In attendance will be local mascots, firefighters and police officers along with the mayors of Cornelius and Concord. Other entertainment will be on-site to celebrate with the Grin Kids and their families, including radio station 96.1 playing the children’s favorite music throughout the celebration. After the sendoff party, the families will fly to Orlando, Fla. using Miami Air, whose plane will comfortably seat the 168 attendees.

“We’ve been anxiously awaiting this trip all year. It’s such a tremendous experience for everyone involved, from me and TJ, to the children and their families, to the volunteers who come to help make this a memorable trip,” said Ace, co-founder of Grin Kids.

“We are so lucky to have this opportunity every year, and it wouldn’t be possible without the support of our listeners, local communities and partners like Jersey Mike’s and Speedway Children’s Charities. There’s nothing better than seeing the Grin Kid’s faces light up with joy during our time at Disney World,” added TJ, co-founder of Grin Kids.

Families for this year’s trip will come from all over the Southeast, including the Carolinas, Alabama, Virginia and Tennessee. All members of a Grin Kid’s immediate family are invited to participate in the trip, and many families come home with new relationships that often bond them together for life.

“Wow – we can’t thank you all enough for choosing our family. You allowed us to have a real vacation – a break from reality, doctors’ appointments, therapy treatments, and hospitals. You also allowed us to meet new families whose journey is similar to ours – they are now our friends!” said a 2016 Grin Kids family member.

Upon arriving in Florida, the families will travel together on buses to their Walt Disney World hotel and settle in their rooms at Port Orleans before their annual pool party. The following days will consist of planned special events and free time for the families to explore the parks on their own.

To find out more information about the Ace and TJ’s Grin Kids charity or make a donation visit www.grinkids.org.