McGee Sixth Grader Sarah Bellizzi Gives Newtown Youths Temporary Smiles

Berlin's Bellizzi arranges ice skating and horse and carriage rides for Newtown youngsters.


Berlin sixth grader Sarah Bellizzi has a smile that could light up any room.

So it is no surprise to those who know her to think she would be deeply affected by the Newtown shooting tragedy and want to do something to bring smiles to the faces of the kids of Newtown.

She did just that on Monday.

"Sarah has been wanting to do something since it happened," her father Keith Bellizzi said. "She has been watching the news and the events and stories that have been on and she was attracted to one girl, Jessica Rekos, who was killed. She had a love for horses and so does Sarah."

According to her biography, Jessica Rekos, 6, loved everything about horses - horse movies, horse books, drawing horses and writing stories about them.

So father and daughter brainstormed to come up with an activity that would bring out the Newtown youths and bring a smile to their faces, even if they were temporary.

Keith Bellizzi contacted the Newtown first selectman who put him in touch with the Assistant Director of Parks and Recreation. The two came up with an idea to have a day of ice skating and horse and carriage rides.

"At the beginning I contacted farms to see if they had horses we could use," Keith Bellizzi said. "I was prepared to pay for the horses because I just wanted to make Sarah's dream come true. I called one farm, Wood Acres in Terryville and once I told the owners, Joyce and Ken Woods, what we were hoping to do, they donated the use of the horse and carriage."

The event was originally set for last Friday but the darned Blizzard made it impossible and the make-up day was Monday. It could not have been a more clear and beautiful day in Newtown even if it was a little chilly.

Despite the Boston Bruins NHL hockey team being in town and signing autographs for kids in Newtown, more than 50 children from Newtown attended the event organized by Sarah and Keith Bellizzi. Taylor Bellizzi also was there to help out.

"We had some pretty stiff competition with the Bruins being in town," said Bellizzi. "But the kids and parents who came were really grateful and appreciative of the effort. Sarah got a few hand-written notes from parents thanking her. One mom took off her Newtown bracelet and put it on Sarah's wrist. I'm really proud of Sarah, I always am but today was a great day."


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