"Wayne put forth a lot of momentum for this year. We are going to become a not-for-profit organization called 'North Country Hardship Fund,' and all the donations for this year will go toward helping families in similar situations to the Bukovinsky's. This is Wayne's way of giving back," said Studnicky. "We are working through the process of making decisions on what will qualify people for the fund. We will probably have an application and closely look at it; we are putting a team of seven together to do that. It's still new to us and we are still making finite decisions. We are kind of leaving it open as to what we'll look at, it could be numerous things; accidents, illness, or fires."
Last year, the benefit was able to raise into five figures, and this year those involved hope to see the same success. The event is open to the public at no charge, but attendees are encouraged to give what they can. There will be auctioning and raffles all day, and entertainment from noon on. A special highlight of the day will be the marriage of Erika Bukovinsky, Wayne's daughter, which will take place during the benefit.
A tightly knit community coming together to help a well-loved friend seemed to be the recipe that spelled success for Waynestock I: that same spirit is expected to surround Waynestock II.
"It's impossible to sum Wayne up in a word. He's your friend, he's there for you in every facet, he's always been there for people. He's a giver; the whole family is," said Studnicky. "You look at where we live, and the people have a reputation-they always come together to take care of each other. That's one of the fantastic things about our community. And Wayno has so many avenues; he's got his motorcycle family, his theatrical family, his firefighter family, and his family family."
Studnicky confessed that its been quite a journey since that fateful day last April, but said his friend has achieved countless victories along the way.
As he summed it up in one sentence..."He's come a long, long way in the last 15 months, and he's still Wayno."