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My take: Fantasy football for a cause—Round 4

July 31/Aug. 7: Volume 31, Issue 4
By Steven Feldman

Screen Shot 2016-07-15 at 3.46.11 PMAs summer fades and the air starts to get crisp, the fall selling season is upon us. Equally important to many is the start of that sacred time of the year commonly known as football season.

Regardless of how many times we failed to make our high school team, there’s one football-related game all of us can play: fantasy football. In fact, throughout the last decade, one of the most popular hobbies in North America has been fantasy sports. According to the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, the number of participants in fantasy leagues has exploded to 59.3 million, up from 57.4 million in 2016 and up 43% in the past three years. Fantasy sports are estimated to have a $3 billion to $4 billion annual economic impact across the sports industry.

With that as the backdrop, FCNews in 2014 launched its inaugural fantasy football league. The idea was to have 12 teams compete not for personal profit but for a good cause. Three years ago, the Informa Exhibitions team of Dana Teague and Amie Gilmore dusted the competition and secured $2,400 for their charity of choice, the Floor Covering Industry Foundation. Two years ago it was Mohawk Commercial, led by captain Michel Vermette, securing the first place prize of $5,000 for Susan G. Komen and breast cancer.

Last year we stepped up the entry fee to $5,000, and Long Island distributor Salesmaster wound up winning $13,000 for the American Cancer Society. But with weekly prizes and healthy awards for the runners-up, Mohawk Commercial won $11,500 for Susan G. Komen; Coverings earned $6,500 for the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation; and FCNews scored $6,750 for Long Island Cares Food Bank.

As you can see, the participants play for a variety of causes, from The Lupus Foundation and Autism Speaks right down to the local level, where one team sought to provide athletic equipment for the neighborhood high school.

So now it’s time to form the league for the 2017 season. The entry fee will again be $5,000 with $15,000 going to the winning team’s charity, $9,000 going to the runner-up’s cause, followed by prizes of $6,500, $4,500, $1,000 and $500 to every other team. In addition, $1,000 will be awarded weekly to the charity of the team with the highest score. If you are interested in entering, you will need to announce your cause when your entry is accepted. Aside from individuals, we also welcome all companies—manufacturers, retailers and distributors—to enter. Anyone can do the drafting, from the CEO to the forklift driver to an employee’s hotshot kid.

Before the start of the season, which kicks off Thursday night, Sept. 7, we will publish the 12 team names and the charities for which they will be playing. We will even include a small write-up on each charity as well as why it has been designated by the team’s owner. At that point we will invite FCNews readers to get behind the team whose cause best resonates with them.

So, if you are interested in participating, here is what you need to know: There will be an online draft on a date and time to be determined, most likely Sept. 5, 6 or 7 around 5 p.m. EST. If no one from your company is available the night of the draft, there is a feature called “auto draft” where the computer makes selections for you based on pre-determined rankings. You will also have the ability to make roster moves throughout the year. Should more than 12 companies express interest, there can be multiple leagues or divisions. But please contact us quickly if you would like to participate. There are a limited number of spots available.

For more details, please email


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Mohawk Commercial scores big in FCNews charity league

October 24/31, 2016: Volume 31, Number 10

Seven weeks into the 2016 NFL season, defending champion Mohawk Commercial is again atop the FCNews’ Fantasy Football for a Cause league standings. So far, the MoComm Machine is undefeated and has already raised $3,000 for its cause, Susan G. Komen. The powerhouse leads FCNews in the standings by two games and Salesmaster by three games. Both FCNews and Salesmaster have raised $1,500 for its charities of choice, Long Island Cares and American Cancer Society, respectively.

The league awards $1,000 in prize money for the high-scoring team of the week and $500 for the second highest score. The winner of the league will earn $11,500 for its cause while the runner-up will earn $7,500. Third-place is worth $5,000; fourth place, $2,500; fifth place, $1,500 with the remaining teams each earning $500. Playoffs begin in week 14.


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FCNews invites you to join Fantasy Football for a Cause

21848251428_828543004e_bThe annual Floor Covering News Fantasy Football for a Cause league has started up and FCNews invites you to participate. All industry members (retailers, distributors, manufacturers) are welcome. Contact Dustin Aaronson at 516.932.7860 or today as limited spots are available. See below for details.

2016 League rules:

  • $5000 per team to enter. This year’s league will either have 12 or 14 teams depending on responses. ALL money goes to charity.
  • Each team will choose a charity to play for.
  • Each week for the first 13 weeks the highest scoring team will win $1,000 for their charity, the second highest scoring team will win $500 for their charity (In the event of a tie for first, the first and second prizes will be awarded to tied teams. If tie for second $500 will be split)
  • The rest of the prize money will be split as listed below to league winners’ charities. Playoffs start in week 14 and weekly prizes are not awarded after week 13 (Please note that ALL charities will receive a donation through the league, not just the winners)
  • If 12 teams: $60,000 – $19,500 for first 13 week’s prizes – Leaves $40,500 for season prizes broken down as follows:

$15,000 to 1st place team’s charity – $9,000 to 2nd place team’s charity – $6,500 to 3rd place team’s charity – $4,500 to 4th place team’s charity – $1000 to 5th place team’s charity and $500 to all other 9 team’s charities

  • If 14 teams: $70,000 – $19,500 for first 13 week’s prizes – Leaves $50,500 for season prizes broken down as follows:

$16,000 to 1st place team’s charity – $10,000 to 2nd place team’s charity – $8,000 to 3rd place team’s charity – $6,000 to 4th place team’s charity – $1500 to 5th place team’s charity and $1000 to all other 9 team’s charities

We will need to know which charity your company is playing for before draft day, which will be the final week of August.

Each company will receive checks made out to their charity for the amount they won through the season. This is so you see that the exact amount won for your cause is sent to the proper contact at said good cause.

The league will be covered in the pages of Floor Covering News through the season. Each charity will be given some ink in the beginning of the season to highlight what the organization does to make a difference. Remember, it feels good to do good!

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Fantasy Football for a Cause: 14 charities included in FCNews’ annual fundraiser

September 14/21; Volume 30/Number 7

The Floor Covering News Fantasy Football for a Cause league closed with 14 teams, including a couple of late entries which forced expansion of the league. All are playing for worthy causes as seen in the box below.

Each team pledged $1,000, which will be divided as follows:

  • $5,000 to the winner’s causeScreen Shot 2015-09-21 at 1.27.53 PM
  • $2,500 to the runner-up’s charity
  • $1,600 to the third-place team
  • $1,000 to the fourth place team

In addition, a weekly prize of $300 will be doled out to the highest scoring team for that week.

Unbeknownst to all teams that entered, FCNews will be contributing an additional 25% to each prize awarded.

Here is a brief snapshot of each cause that will be represented through the league’s participants. FCNews and all teams encourage contributions from our readers to any charity that resonates with them.


All Tile

Autism Speaks

Autism Speaks was founded in 2005 by Bob and Suzanne Wright, the grandparents of a child with autism, and has grown into the world’s leading autism science and advocacy organization, dedicated to funding research of its causes, prevention, treatments and possible cures.



Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA)

The Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) is a non-profit, volunteer-driven organization dedicated to finding the cures for Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Since its founding over four decades ago, CCFA has remained at the forefront of research.



Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF)

The Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF) provides education and installer certification for professionals working in the ceramic tile and stone industries. The CTEF Certified Tile Installer (CTI) program is the only third-party assessment of installer skill and knowledge recognized by the tile industry.


DriTac Flooring Products

Triangle Residential Options for Substance Abusers (TROSA)

TROSA is an innovative two-year residential substance abuse recovery program that provides comprehensive treatment, work-based vocational training, education and continuing care, enabling substance abusers to be productive during their recovery. Based in Durham, N.C., the program only accepts substance abusers with a strong desire to change their lives. TROSA’s program elements also include counseling, mentoring and leadership training.


Floor Covering News

Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC)

The mission of Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) is to create, find and support programs that improve the health and well being of children. Ronald McDonald Houses provide safe and affordable places to stay for families of seriously ill or injured children, keeping them together during difficult times.



Parkinson Society British Columbia

Parkinson Society British Columbia is the voice of British Columbians living with Parkinson’s disease. Its purpose is to ease the burden and find a cure for Parkinson’s disease through advocacy, education, research and support services. Parkinson Society British Columbia receives no government funding and is supported entirely by donations and volunteer efforts.



National Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society

The National MS Society aims to move toward a world free of multiple sclerosis. The society helps people address the challenges of living with MS through its 50-state network of chapters. The society funds research, drives change through advocacy, facilitates education and provides programs and services that help people with MS and their families.


Mohawk Flooring

Susan G. Komen

Susan G. Komen has grown into the world’s largest non-profit source of funding for the fight against breast cancer. To date, the group has invested more than $2.6 billion in research, community health outreach, advocacy and programs in more than 30 countries. Its efforts have helped reduce death rates from breast cancer by 34% since 1990.



American Cancer Society

The American Cancer Society is the nationwide, community-based, voluntary health organization dedicated to eliminating cancer through research, education, advocacy and service. Thanks in part to the contributions of this society, more than 1.5 million lives have been saved in the U.S. in the past two decades.


Oser Paint & Flooring

Finley Foundation for SIDS

Finley Foundation for SIDS is a non-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness and funds with the hopes of one day ending sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) for the next generation of parents. Finley Foundation for SIDS sponsors numerous events including its Annual Finley 5K Run/Walk in Georgetown, Ky., and the first-ever Mid-South Football Conference SIDS awareness day in 2014 that included 13 NAIA participating football teams. The foundation’s goal is to grow the event to include over 100 teams.

Raskin Industries Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF)

The Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) is leading the melanoma community in helping to transform melanoma from one of the deadliest cancers to one of the most treatable through research, education and advocacy. Committed to the support of medical research in finding effective treatments and eventually a cure for melanoma, the MRF also educates patients, caregivers and physicians about prevention, diagnosis and treatment options.



American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. Founded by six cardiologists in 1924, the organization now includes more than 22.5 million volunteers and supporters. It helps fund innovative research, fights for stronger public health policies, and provides critical tools and information to save and improve lives. The association supports a number of causes including Go Red For Women, Go Red Por Tu Corazón and Power To End Stroke.

Shaw Floors

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

St. Jude is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. St. Jude has spent more than 50 years finding cures and saving children. Its groundbreaking research has helped push the survival rate for childhood cancer from less than 20% in 1962 to more than 80% today.


The International Surface Event (TISE)

Floor Covering Industry Foundation (FCIF)

The Floor Covering Industry Foundation (FCIF), a 34-year-old, non-profit organization, has been dedicated to financially assisting people in the floor covering industry who have suffered extreme circumstances or illnesses. The foundation depends on contributions from industry manufacturers, distributors, retailers, trade associations and individuals. Therefore, the amount of assistance that can be provided, as well as the number of beneficiaries who can be helped, is determined by the availability of funds.

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Let the games begin: FCNews' inaugural Fantasy Football League for a Cause

Let the games begin!

About a month ago, Floor Covering News announced the formation of its inaugural Fantasy Football League for a Cause. We opened it up to the industry, and we are happy to announce the 12 companies that will be participating and the causes for which they will be playing.


1. Floor Covering News      Floor Covering Industry Foundation

2. Surfaces                             Floor Covering Industry Foundation

3. Coverings                          Ceramic Tile Education Foundation

4. All Tile                               Autism Speaks

5. Marshall Carpet               Project Love

6. Professional Carpet Co.    Hire Heroes USA

7. Designers North Carpet   Abilities at The Viscardi Center

8. L Fishman & Sons           Autism Speaks

9. Dave Snedeker                  Kids Against Hunger

10. Tri-State Carpet              Windy City Habitat for Humanity

11. Smith Floor Coverings    Bowdon, Ga. High School Athletics

12. Floor Coverings of Winona        The Lupus Foundation of America

There will be $2,400 in the pool to begin, with $1,600 going to the winning cause and $800 to the runner-up. But, if you recall, we asked that our readers pledge their support to any respective team. You can play it two ways: 1. Pledge any amount you wish and if the team you back wins the league, send a check to that cause, or 2. pledge any amount and send the check regardless. We will post the standings each week as well as the collective amount that has been pledged. We only ask that you follow through on that pledge because FCNews will not be policing it.

But for now, here is a bit about the 10 causes that may benefit from this endeavor (there were two duplications):

Hire Heroes USA     Professional Carpet Co., Hackensack, N.J.

After U.S. troops return from combat, many find it difficult to get re-associated in society. Believe it or not, most employers, although proud of their country, would not hire a veteran due to the chance they may go back out on another tour. Several have to settle for a much lower-tier job, be forced to re-enlist or act out in ways that may be harmful to themselves and others. Hire Heroes USA is a team comprised of military veterans—many with combat experience in Iraq and Afghanistan—and business veterans. That mix of military and civilian experience has proven essential to effectively training veterans in the skills of self-marketing and then networking them into good jobs with quality companies.

Abilities at The Viscardi Center     Designers North Carpet, Albertson, N.Y.

Abilities at The Viscardi Center prepares adolescents and adults with all types of disabilities (cognitive, physical, learning, developmental) and levels of experience for entry or re-entry into the workforce by assisting them in securing pre-employment services as well as employment so they can enjoy independent living, full community participation and economic self-sufficiency. Its employment services include a comprehensive array of career assessments, job training, business skills development, job placement and follow-up programs and services based on individual needs and vocational interests.

The Lupus Foundation of America     Floor Coverings of Winona, Winona, Minn.

The Lupus Foundation of America is the only national force devoted to solving the mystery of lupus, one of the world’s cruelest, most unpredictable and devastating diseases, while giving caring support to those who suffer from its brutal impact. Through a comprehensive program of research, education and advocacy, the foundation leads the fight to improve the quality of life for all people affected by lupus.

Autism Speaks     All Tile     L Fishman & Son  

Since it was founded in February 2005, Autism Speaks has grown into the world’s leading autism science and advocacy organization, dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and cure for autism; increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders, and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families. Autism Speaks aims to bring the autism community together as one strong voice to urge the government and private sector to listen to its concerns and take action to address this urgent global health crisis.

Kids Against Hunger      Dave Snedeker, Nebraska Furniture Mart

The mission of Kids Against Hunger, a humanitarian food-aid organization, is to significantly reduce the number of hungry children in the USA and to feed starving children throughout the world. The organization’s approach to achieving its goal— the eradication of world hunger—includes the packaging of a highly nutritious, vitamin-fortified soy-rice casserole by volunteers at numerous locations within the U.S. and Canada, and the distribution of those meals to starving children and their families in over 60 countries worldwide. Snedeker’s wife is director of the Lincoln, Neb., chapter.

Project Love        Marshall Carpet One and Rug Gallery, Maryland Heights, Ohio

Project Love Remember the Children Foundation is a character-building education and training organization. Through workshops, community events, leadership training and media programs, it empowers teens and adults to create a culture of kindness, caring and respect. Its mission is achieved through hands-on programming in middle and high schools in eight northeast Ohio counties and through video-based programming nationally. It provides intensive leadership training seminars for teens and other character education tools that help schools combat bullying, cheating and fighting.

 Bowdon High School Athletics         Smith Floor Coverings, Bowdon, Ga.  

Bowdon, Ga., is a small town that was thriving in the 1960s, ‘70s and ‘80s because of Sewell’s Manufacturing, which employed between 600 and 700 people. But they lost a lot of their contracts in the mid-‘90s and the town has diminished as Sewell’s disappeared. The high school’s athletic department is always falling short when it comes to sending kids to camps and getting the proper jerseys and practice uniforms. And when they have out-of-town games it is always up to small businesses and donors to scrape up money to take care of the kids the way the town feels it should.

Windy City Habitat For Humanity         Tri-State Carpet, Elgin, Ill.

Windy City Habitat for Humanity works in partnership with people from all walks of life to build simple, decent, affordable houses, and to strengthen families and neighborhoods. Windy City Habitat for Humanity will work toward eliminating poverty housing in the Chicago metropolitan area and seek to build better lives, stronger families and safer communities through partnerships with local groups and organizations.

Floor Covering Industry Foundation     Surfaces  Floor Covering News

The Floor Covering Industry Foundation (FCIF) is dedicated to financially assisting those who are or have been affiliated with the floor covering industry and experience illnesses, severe disabilities or other hardships. The foundation ensures these philanthropic efforts are accomplished with compassion, confidentiality and preservation of dignity for the individuals concerned. Grants are awarded based on the need for expenses such as medical care, medications and other costs directly related to beneficiary care, as well as basic necessities.

Ceramic Tile Education Foundation     Coverings

Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF) is an educational institution that offers training programs for consumers, installers, construction professionals, architects, designers, building inspectors and sales associates interested in the sale and installation of ceramic tile. Classes are conducted on a year-round basis at the CTEF facility in Pendleton, S.C., in addition to numerous satellite programs throughout the U.S.


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Fantasy football for a cause: FCNews seeks players

July 21/28, 2014; Volume 28; Number 3

By Steven Feldman

football copySeptember is just around the corner. You know what that means…the unofficial start of the fall selling season. Equally important to many is the start of that sacred time of the year commonly known as football season.

Throughout the last 10 years, one of the most popular hobbies among U.S. citizens has been fantasy football. According to the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, the number of participants in fantasy leagues rose to a record 33.5 million Americans in 2012, or roughly 10% of the U.S. population; fantasy football players account for 90% of that number. Twenty percent of fantasy sports players are women. Participants spend roughly $1.6 billion on products and services in the fantasy sports space, and that does not include entry fees.

And with that, FCNews is getting in on the action with the launch of its inaugural fantasy football league. I know what many of you are saying: “What place does this have in a floor covering trade magazine?”

To that I say, “Lighten up.” Here’s the deal. No. 1, we are all people, and people need to have some fun in their lives. No. 2, so many of you are playing fantasy football anyway. And No. 3, the FCNews league is going to be different than any other league in that it will benefit more than the winning team owner.

Here’s why: Those who enter will not only be playing for personal profit, but also for charity. If you are interested in entering, you will be playing for the cause of your choosing. And, we will be covering our league both in the print publication and online. We will include your team name, company and the charity for which you will be playing. At the end of the season (actually Week 16), the winner will split 67% of the pool with his or her named charity and the runner-up will split the remaining 33% with his or her respective charity.

Now here is where this gets interesting. Before the NFL’s first week of games, we will publish the 12 team names and the charity for which they will be playing. We may even post the rosters online. At that point we will invite FCNews readers to get behind either the team they believe is best or the team that represents the charity that most resonates with them. And by “get behind” I mean pledge a certain amount to that charity should it finish in the top two. Of course, you can certainly contribute to that charity no matter the outcome. For the record, FCNews will be playing for the Floor Covering Industry Foundation.

We will not be monitoring whether people make good on the pledges; we subscribe to the honor system. However, we do ask that you make us aware of any pledges so we can keep a tally as to the amount a charity will benefit by virtue of a victory by its supporting team.

So you are interested in participating. Here’s what you need to know: There will be an online draft on a date and time to be determined, most likely the first week in September, maybe the last week in August. If you are unavailable the night of the draft, there is a feature called auto draft where the computer makes selections for you based on pre-determined rankings. You will have the ability to make moves throughout the year.  Should more than 12 people express interest, there can be multiple leagues. But please contact us quickly if you have interest in participating. There are a limited number of available spots.

For more details, please email me at