Is it a coincidence that the gentleman with the largest personal collection of hobby, educational, appliance and affordable research robots in the world also has the biggest heart and has helped the most people, and particularly, kids? There is a connection between technology and goodness in this world, and the person who is the most emblematic of this connection, as far as I know, is Rick Newman. Rickâ€™s Halloween Sound, Light & Laser Show raised $2,000 in donations for the Make a Wish Foundation. Dancers from Jewels Dance Studio did a re-enactment of Michael Jacksonâ€™s â€œThriller”.Rick notes on his website that it could not have been done without the help of dancers who volunteered their time to put on several live performances in his front yard! You can see a sample of the show here.
Rick has a Holiday show at Christmas that starts on Thanksgiving Eve at 6 pm and continues every night until December 31st. This year on Christmas Eve he has arranged for Santa himself to be here with his sleigh giving out candy canes and being photographed with kids of all ages.
Amazingly, the local municipality tried to crackdown on Rick and stop his Halloween and Xmas front-yard shows on the theory that they were commercial enterprises. However, all donations at the performances he has coordinated go to charity, he does not pocket a dime, and the pressure from the local city authorities ultimately became a national news story as is reported in the local newspaper, the Sun-Sentinel!
How generous is this roboteer? Rick has at times visited hospital rooms to personally bring robots and entertainment to very sick kids as young as two and three years old. He tirelessly rebuilds and upgrades his animatronics robots for his Halloween and Christmas shows, and itâ€™s all for the kids.
The Sci-Fi movie trailer for â€œAres 11â€ was shot in West Palm Beach, close to where he lives, and most of the panels, blinking lights and space suits used in the movie are from his unsurpassed collection. His inventory of space artifacts are both used in movies and displayed at museums. Robot magazine will feature Rickâ€™s incredible robot collection in our March-April 2012 issue, which will be available in January. Stay tuned for more on this remarkable citizen who has done so much for his community. In the meantime, explore Rickâ€™s websites! HighTechScience.org, High-TechProductions.com. And, you can follow him on Twitter and Facebook.