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My Double 7 Birthday ‘Festival’


By: Joe Mauricio


Thank you’s for the people in my life who threw a surprise birthday “festival” at Cucina di Biagio in Harwood Hts last August 23 rd (my real birthday falls on August 19 th).

I have never had a surprise birthday party before, and could not have imagined how loved it would make me feel. I felt like a total champion because everyone came together because of my Irog’s surreptitious work, just for me. I was surrounded by pure beauty in the faces of my friends. To you, your presence and your gifts have given me immeasurable joys. Thank you so much!

To be honest, my heart skipped a few beats when everyone shouted “Happy Birthday!” As a matter of fact, I think I could literally feel it skip. A special message to my Irog, I can’t believe you made all that effort to throw me a surprise birthday festival. It must have been a ton of work, Irog! Please know that I am grateful beyond words. Can’t thank you enough.

Over time, as we grow older, we grow to appreciate emotional and spiritual gifts much more than the physical ones. To my friends, that feeling of belonging and love that you shared with me on my “festival” was the best gift I’ve ever received during our “post-lockdown” days. It will stay in my heart forever. You all made it happen for me. You are exceptional friends and family!


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