Local 10-year-olds, who dress up in costumes to raise money, making final push to reach goal for United Way

Published on Wednesday, 13 October 2021 13:39


BRISTOL – Local 10-year-olds Luke Koser and Nico Florenciani have been out at many community events this year raising money for United Way of West Central Connecticut. This Sunday, they are teaming with T. Marshall Photography to offer professional headshots as a final push to reach their $1,500 goal.

Those who are interested in having professional headshots taken can register for a 20-minute photo session after which they will receive 10 digital photos. Headshots will be done between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. this Sunday. The session is $150. People can register by emailing dkoser@uwwestcentralct.org.

Donna Koser, early childhood coordinator at West Central Connecticut and Luke’s mother, said headshots should be updated every one to two years or after someone makes a significant change to their image. She encouraged people to “make a great impression while supporting a good cause.”

“I think the boys would be really excited if they are able to reach or exceed their goal,” she said. “They will also have a booth at the Plymouth 225th anniversary celebration block party this Saturday, which will be their last public event.”

Luke Koser and Nico Florenciani have appeared at many community events this year, including Bristol Blues games in Bristol and Music on the Green concerts in Plymouth. The pair are easily spotted, with Koser dressed in a cucumber costume and Florenciani dressed as a chicken. Together, they have been selling peaches, tomatoes and other produce donated by members of the community.

Florenciani dresses like a chicken for “Nico’s Nuggets” because he became the owner of pet chickens last year. Since then, he has been doing programs for younger children at Terryville Public Library, teaching them facts about chickens and allowing them to pet the baby chicks.

“Luke’s Cukes” and “Nico’s Nuggets have already raised more than $1,000 to support United Way of West Central Connecticut, exceeding their original goal in August. They then decided to push for a new goal of $1,500.

The money raised for United Way of West Central Connecticut was used to support purchasing school supplies for children in need through the “Adopt a Child” backpack drive.

“I feel great helping out a good cause,” Koser said.

Last year, Koser collected $300 for United Way of West Central Connecticut. This year, his friend Florenciani joined him. He has helped out by selling painted rocks and flowers in addition to the vegetables.

“I never thought we’d get so much support,” Florenciani said. “It makes me feel like a good person to know that this money will help United Way, who will use it to help a lot of people.”

Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or bjohnson@bristolpress.com.

Posted in The Bristol Press, Plymouth, Terryville on Wednesday, 13 October 2021 13:39. Updated: Wednesday, 13 October 2021 13:41.