It is with humble hearts and with great pleasure that we would like to announce that we have officially created a Ray Brothers Barbeque Charitable Trust. The creation of this non-profit organization is to help us continue our efforts of building up our local community.
We have made it a priority since day one to always remember how we got where we are and to never forget those who helped us along the way. Our mother has always been a catalyst for that frame of mind in our family. She told us, “if you can, you do.”
Since our inception in 2014, in addition to our restaurant, bar, catering, and music venue, RBQ has created and or contributed to many local charity events. To list a few:
-Our Real Men Wear Pink campaign for Breast Cancer Awareness
-No Shave November for Colon Cancer Awareness
-Fully funding, organizing and hosting the Madison Bouckville Tree Lighting right here at our restaurant. This event includes the Madison Junior/Senior Choir singing Christmas carols on our stage, the Madison Fire Department driving Santa to the property to meet kids on stage, and us lighting up The Yard for the holidays
-Our summer kickoff Backyard BBQ on Memorial Day, which helps to fund several of our local SPCA and animal shelters
-Our Hop Harvest Smoke Out on Labor Day weekend, which becomes a mini festival where small businesses set up and sell their products during the concerts
-Our Annual RBQ Open Golf Tournament, which has now raised over $50,000 for local school districts. To date, Madison, Morrsville, Hamilton, Stockbridge, Richfield Springs, Sherburne and Waterville have all been recipients of this event's proceeds.
-Sponsors of various youth sports teams
-Annual collection box for Toys for Tots
So many of these amazing opportunities are the outcomes of the hard work and dedication of our incredible staff, who help us put into action our vision of commitment to our community.
The main reason we are sharing this is to make you aware of a recent opportunity that we are so grateful for: taking over the stewardship of a local Hamilton scholarship near and dear to our family.
30+ years ago the Mayer family lost their father and husband, Kevin “Bone” Mayer. He was someone that shared our community values of building up our youth and always giving back however possible with time, energy and money.
At the time of his death, four of his good friends created a golf tournament in his name with the goal of raising funds to help his three children pursue higher education.
At the end of the tournament run and after the kids went to school, the remaining funds went into a program at Hamilton Central School in his name, and the Bone Mayer Scholarship was created! Each year the funds are given to an HCS graduating senior that has shown their enthusiasm for sports and school spirit. The recipient could be an athlete, a team manager, or just someone from the class that went above and beyond to support their fellow classmates in competition.
Bone was someone who epitomized this spirit. He was at all of his children’s sporting events, and most of the time you may have thought he was the only one in the stands - he always made sure that everyone, refs included, knew he was there!
His fervor for sports, his children and his community spurred him to be a founder of the local Eaton Street fields. We were told by some of his closest friends that Bone would spend his lunch breaks and nights raking, mowing, putting up fences, and more; all so our area's youth could have the opportunity to play ball in little league and softball games.
When we asked his friends to tell us about the man, father and husband, these are a few of their quotes:
“Kevin Mayer would put his head down and go to the hoop, or enter a burning building, or make sure that every child had the opportunity to share their Christmas list with Santa Claus.”
“Kevin was one of those people who gave of himself freely and without guile or ulterior motive. He was a volunteer fireman and Santa Claus at Hamilton’s Carol Sing. As one of the boys, at noontime hoops, he went at one speed: full throttle.”
“Kevin ‘Bone’ got along with everyone. He crossed all kinds of lines within his community and was comfortable wherever he found himself. He was everyone’s friend. He gave so much to his town and its children, his and everyone else.”
It’s this kind of spirit that drives us to want to do everything we can to make sure the scholarship in his name continues.
Current funds are in place and our hopes are to increase those annually so this can be one of the most sought-after athletic scholarships in Hamilton.
We have committed to start at $1,000 on our end, but our hopes are that you may have the same feelings we do and would like to support this effort as well.
We have created a link that is now live here on our website's Community Support tab. We have pledged to get this year taken care of, but if you would like to help in building the funds for years to come, please use this page to donate whatever you can.
Thank you so much for your time and support to help further the success of our local children.
Tucker & Colin Ray