Kids Choice Awards

by Darla Zecchin

KCA blimo

The Nickelodeon Kids Choice Award Blimp

Your award should represent your brand. Not all trophies are golden and sophisticated; some are bright orange and fun! The Orange Blimp is the award given to Nickelodeon’s Kids Choice Award winners!
The Kids Choice Awards show is unique and is 100% voted for by fans – and more importantly by kids! There for it needed a unique prize! The orange blimp was introduced in 1990, 2 years after the award show began. Prior to the Blimp it was a gold statue shaped to look like a beret-wearing child standing up with his right leg crossed and holding up a long orange stick, with the word “Nickelodeon” inscribed on it. However Nickelodeon felt that this didn’t represent the Award show, which dumps neon green Slim on its winners, properly.

All nominations are kid friendly and can be voted for online on an app by views at home and the most popular wins. KCA has always been creative with how the announce winners opting to do away with the standard envelope and writing the winners names in balloons or on a surf board.

The Blimp Award is designed to look like Nickelodeons signature orange blimp that was used as a logo from 1984-2009. The Award is a hollow blimp figure which also functions as a kaleidoscope.

The 2015 Kids Choice Awards will take place Sunday March 28th at 8 pm EST and will be hosted by former Award Recipient Nick Jonas.

Do you have a unique event? Let Spike’s Help you design the perfect award to represent it!

The Grammy Award

By: Darla Zecchin

This Sunday Feb 8th is the 57th Annual Grammy Awards! All across the country people will be tuninggrammy-2014 in to CBS to see if their favorite artist will be taking home the prize. LL Cool J will be hosting for the 4th year in a row with stars like Katy Perry, Madonna, and Tony Bennett performing.

The Grammys have become more than a music award, it is an extravagant social event. Live coverage will start early in the day from the red carpet, interviews from stars in attendance will take place, live tweets will be coming from inside discussing winners and behind the scenes reporting! Everyone at home will be gathered in the living room talking about their favorite music, performances, and what the stars are wearing.

But what do you know about the actual Award?
The Gramophone Trophy or more commonly called “the Grammy” originated in the Hollywood Walk of Fame project in 1950. As the executive committee complied the list of Walk of Fame star recipients they realized there were many industry leaders who would never earn a star on Hollywood Blvd, so they decided to create their own event like the Oscars and the Emmys. The result was the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences and in 1958 the first ever Grammy Awards were given to recognize outstanding achievement in the music industry.

The Grammy is a hand made gold plated gramophone manufactured in Ridgeway, Co.  In 1990, the original design was revamped due to the original metals being too soft and tone arm on the trophies were breaking. So in the new design the tone arm was “beefed up”. The current trophy is bigger and grander, about 30% larger than the original.

While the original Grammys were cast in lead,  the  current version was switched to a metal alloy of zinc and aluminum the manufacturers call Granium. After being filed, ground and polished they are electroplated first in copper, then nickel plated, and finally plated in 24K gold.

The Gramophone cabinet (below tone arm) was redesigned entirely out of sheet brass cut out on a band saw.  The mold for the cabinet is a six-piece mold and the tone arm is a five-piece mold. Molds for casting are made, so the awards can be reproduced in quantity. The trophy has 4 major components: The Base; The Cabinet; The Tone Arm; And The Bell. The Bell is manufactured separately in a Metal Spinning plant in California. The Grammy is assembled in pieces and finally finished off in gold plating.

Because winners are kept top secret the trophies used during the award ceremony are “stunt” Grammys. The actual awards are kept at the manufacturers until after the ceremony when names can be engraved and then hand delivered to the academy for the recipients to receive.

There’s a lot of hard work and great detail put into these stunning awards! So stay tuned this Sunday to see who will be taking home the golden Gramophone!



grammy trophyMore information on the Grammy can be found at

To learn about how winners are decided click here: 

The Lombardi Trophy 2015

After a tame (almost boring) start to the 2015 Super Bowl, the second half had you on the edge of your seat! The game was painfully close and with less than 2 minuets left the Seahawks chose to throw the ball at the 1 yard line allowing the Patriots to intercept and win the Super Bowl and take home the Lombardi Trophy for the 4th time.Lombardi_Trophy

The Lombardi Trophy has become one of the world’s most prestigious sports awards. It is named after legendary NFL coach Vince Lombardi. The idea came to be in 1966 when NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle had lunch with Tiffany & Co. VP Oscar Riedner and he [Riedner] sketched out what would become the Lombardi Trophy.   Originally named “World professional Football Championship” trophy, it was renamed in 1970 to honor the great NFL Coach Vince Lombardi, who had lost his battle to cancer. Lombardi had led the Green Bay Packers to Victory in the first 2 Super Bowl games. It has also been referred to as the Tiffany Trophy.

The Lombardi trophy is an extremely elegant and simple design standing 22 inches tall and weighs 7lbs, it depicts a regulation football in a kicking position in a 3 concave sided stand made entirely of sterling silver! The trophy uses a heavy gauge of silver that is difficult to bend and shape, so the manufacturing process demands great expertise. First a spinner places onto a lathe a wooden chuck carved into the shape of half a football. A thick sheet of silver is placed on the chuck. With forming tools, it’s spun until it assumes the shape of the chuck. After both halves are formed, they are soldered together to form the ball. Then a silversmith hand chases the seams and laces onto the ball so that it resembles an actual football. The base is formed from sheet stock, which is hand hammered and soldered. The football is attached by a silver rod that comes up through the base and is secured by silver nuts and bolts.

During the manufacturing process, the trophy must be annealed five or six times because the repeated hammering hardens the surface. The annealing loosens the bonding of the molecules in the silver, allowing it to be shaped. After the trophy is complete, the NFL symbol and the Super Bowl number are hand engraved into a sheet stock of silver, which is applied to the base. While officially valued at $10,000 (in 1998), it’s a priceless symbol of hard-earned victory for the players and their fans.   The Lombardi Trophy is made every year and remains in the possession of the winning team, unlike the Stanley Cup or the Grey Cup which get reused year after year.   You can get a replica trophy at

The Oscars (formally known as the Academy Awards)


The Oscars are upon us! On February 22 the 87th annual Oscars Award Show, originally titled The Academy Awards, will take place. The official name change happened in 2013 for The Oscarthe 85th anniversary. First presented in 1929 at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, are overseen by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and ever since it’s first televised in 1953 it has become a world wide phenomenon.

Every year from all over the world people tune in to see if their favorite actor or film of the year will win. Oscar viewing parties will be held and fans will take part in the glamour and drama. Friends and family will discuss who’s dating who, what was worn, what is said. And of course everyone one waits in anticipation to see what entertaining wardrobe malfunctions and speech mistakes will be made, like last years “Adele Dazeem” mishap. The Oscars are a source of entertainment a night of light hearted gossip and competition as you route for your favorites.

Now lets talk about the golden award that this night is centered around! The Oscar is made of gold-plated britannium on a black metal base, it is 13.5 in (34 cm) tall, weighs 8.5 lb (3.85 kg) and depicts a knight rendered in Art Deco style holding a crusader’s sword standing on a reel of film with five spokes. The five spokes represent the original branches of the Academy: Actors, Writers, Directors, Producers, and Technicians.

The brittanium cast first receives a light copper electroplate, then heavy copper. Nickel plating is applied to seal the pores of the metal. Then the statuette is washed in silver-plate. Finally, the statuette is plated in 24-karat gold and receives a baked lacquer finish. Because the winners are top secret they will not be engraved until after the show. The engraver receives the list of winners only after the ceremony; they engrave the plates and ship them back to Hollywood.

“The Oscar is better now than it was 25 years ago because the gold content has been increased,” Owen R. Siegel, the manufacturer of the statuettes states. “I believe the Oscar contains more gold than any other famous award.” The specific dollar value, however, is a secret: “The Academy wants them to be considered priceless”.

Fun fact: Recipients can not sell or auction the Oscar. The Academy protects all of the statues to make sure they can not be sold on the market. All winners sign a contract stating that they will not sell the statue with out offering to sell it back to the Academy first for $1. Only 2 have ever been sold at auction.
- 1992 Harold Russel auctioned his 1946 Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for “The Best Years of Our Lives”
-2011 Oreson Wells heirs auctioned off the 1941 Oscar for Best original Screen Play for Citizens Cane, this sold for 861,542.

You can however get the next best thing! A replica from Spike’s Trophies!

Fun Facts about the Ryder Cup!

This weekend marks the 40th Ryder Cup Competition. Taking place in Scotland, this golf ryder-cupcompetition between Europe the United States happens every 2 years. But do you know where the Ryder Cup got its name?

The idea for the competition started in 1920 when Golf Illustrator suggested that a team of professional American Golfers play in the British Open in 1921. This started what would become a popular sports rivalry with more and more Americans participating in the British Open each year. In 1926 an English business man, Samuel Ryder announced he would donate a cup for an International competition. Starting what would become golf’s most important and competitive team competition, The Ryder Cup.

In 1927 A Ryder Cup “Deed of Trust” was drawn up formalizing the rules of the contest. The first 10 years the competition was only open to the US and Great Britain with the US dominating the game and winning the first 5 contests. (Quite different from the current threat of Britain’s hat trick win this year) The competition was put on hold during WWII and when it r resumed America continued it’s dominance in the competition leading to the inclusion of the rest of Europe in 1979. This change started much of the media and social hype that surround the Ryder Cup as we now know it with three teams: Team USA, Team Great Britain & Ireland, and Team Europe.

The cup itself is made from gold standing at 17 in tall, 9 inch wide weighing 4 pounds! (1/8th the weight of the Stanley Cup) It is rumored that the figurine at the top if the cup is depicted to be Samuel Ryder’s good friend and golf instructor Abe Mitchell.

At the time of its creation the cup cost $400, about $5,600 in today’s US dollars. This price tag is the reason that the PGA has a full size replica that is used at promotional events to avoid damage to the original. As of 2014

The US Team has won 25 of the 39 tournaments, winning team members all receive a mini replica to take home. Let’s see if this weekend team USA can bring home win 26!

Get your own life size replica at or call: 800.333.2927

Famous Awards – The Open’s Claret Jug

The Open Championship (a.k.a. the British Open), one of the four men’s Major Championships in the sport of golf, ends with the awarding of the iconic Claret Jug Trophy to the winner.  Spike’s Trophies carries a replica of this award that can be purchased and awarded by you.  You may not be familiar with the origins of the Claret Jug trophy, I wasn’t.


The Claret Jug, or to use its proper name, The Golf Champion Trophy, is presented to each year’s winner of The Open Championship. Yet it was not the original prize.  When the Championship began at Prestwick Golf Club in Scotland in 1860, the winner was presented with …

… the Challenge Belt, made of rich morocco leather, embellished with a silver buckle and emblems.  It wasn’t until 1872 that the “Jug” replaced the Champion’s Belt.


Like other iconic awards, like Lord Stanley’s Cup or the Green Jacket, the Claret Jug has long held a mystical and celebratory quality.  In designing the Claret Jug, it was well, just that – a claret jug. Claret is a dry red wine produced in the famous French winemaking region of Bordeaux.  The British Open Trophy, made of Sterling Silver and standing 52cm (approximately 20 inches), weighing 5.4 pounds including its base, was designed with a handle that resembles a bass clef and with insides hollowed out to hold the exact contents of a bottle of wine.  Certified appraisers have estimated that the Claret Jug may include as much as $1,200 worth of precious metals.  The sentimental and market value of the award is far greater.  It was made in Edinburgh in 1872 by Mackay Cunningham & Company.  There are now three tiers beneath the cup, engraved with the names of over 130 plus champions.  Every year, the winner’s name is engraved on the Claret Jug before it is presented to him.  The television coverage now shows the engraver poised to start work, with the commentators speculating about when he will be sure enough of the outcome, to begin hand engraving the next name.

Held upside down, the Open’s Claret Jug delivers a perfect pour.  This style of silver jug was used to serve claret at 19th Century gatherings.  The Golf Champion’s Trophy has held cheap beer, expensive Champagne and iced tea brewed by Justin Leonard’s mother.  Tiger Woods, winner of a few “Jugs”, has taken the trophy down from the mantle at times and filled it with various libations.  “Honestly, because of the consumption, I really can’t remember,” Woods said of what he put in it.

The original claret jug is kept under lock and key in a display cabinet in the R&A clubhouse, alongside the original first prize, The Challenge Belt, which was donated to the club in 1908 by the grandchildren of Tom Morris Senior.  There are in fact four copies of the original claret jug, one in the Museum of Golf at St Andrews, another in the World Golf Hall of Fame in St Augustine, Florida.  A third travels the world to exhibitions and the champion is allowed to take a fourth home for a year. He is given a replica to keep which is curiously only two-thirds the size of the original. Since the 1980s all those champion jug-hugging moments photographed for the world on the 18th green are with a replica. The trophy is returned each year for presentation to the new champion, but many winners privately commission copies of the ancient jug for their personal collections. This tournament is golf’s oldest major championship and, given its history, it holds a lot of prestige for its victors.

The Beginning
The impetus to provide the Challenge Belt had come from the Earl of Eglinton and derived from his keen interest in medieval pageantry. He was pre-eminent in encouraging sport throughout the social spectrum and was a leading light in setting up The Open Championship. The Earl donated many trophies for competition, including a gold belt for competition among the Irvine Archers. The original Challenge Belt was purchased by the members of Prestwick Golf Club.

According to the first rule of the new golf competition: “The party winning the belt shall always leave the belt with the treasurer of the club until he produces a guarantee to the satisfaction of the above committee that the belt shall be safely kept and laid on the table at the next meeting to compete for it until it becomes the property of the winner by being won three times in succession.”

In 1870, just 10 years after The Open Championship began, Tom Morris Junior won for the third consecutive time and became the owner of the belt. The future direction of the Championship was discussed at Prestwick Golf Club’s Spring Meeting in April 1871, during which a key proposal was put forward by Gilbert Mitchell Innes: “In contemplation of St Andrews, Musselburgh and other clubs joining in the purchase of a Belt to be played for over four or more greens it is not expedient for the club to provide a Belt to be played for solely at Prestwick.”

The motion was passed, but no final decisions were reached about venues or the involvement of other clubs, with the result that The Open Championship was not played in 1871. Moves to revive the competition resumed the following year. The minutes of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club, dated May 1, state that the green committee had been “empowered to enter into communication with other clubs with a view to effecting a revival of the Championship Belt, and they were authorized to contribute a sum not exceeding £15 from the funds of the club”.

To replace the original Challenge Belt, the three original clubs (Prestwick, with the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews and the Honorable Company of Edinburgh Golfers), finally agreed on September 11, 1872, to pay £10 each to provide a new trophy instead of another belt, which was a silver claret jug, and to jointly host the Open Championship. But that was only two days before eight players contested the Open. There was obviously no time to commission a new trophy and the winner was presented with what appears to be a standard, shop-bought medal (pre-dating Spike’s Trophies by 57 years). It was the first time that a medal had been presented. The famous claret jug trophy was hallmarked 1873. Its proper name was to be The Golf Champion Trophy. It was presented to the winner that year and every year for almost half a century. The first Open Champion to receive the new trophy was the 1873 winner, Tom Kidd, but Tom Morris Junior’s name was the first to be engraved on it as the 1872 winner.

In 1920 all responsibility for The Open Championship was handed over to The Royal and Ancient Golf Club. The tradition continued until three months after Bobby Jones won the championship at St Andrews in 1927. At that time the Championship Committee of the R&A decided that “in future the original Open Championship Cup be retained in possession of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club and that a duplicate be obtained for presentation to the winners”. The cost of this duplicate was stated to be about £40.

In 1928, Walter Hagen won the third of his four Open titles and accepted the replica Claret Jug, having already been presented with the original in 1922 and 1924. During the half-century in which the original Claret Jug was used, twenty-eight different players held it aloft, including Harry Vardon on a record six occasions.

In 1990 a further replica was made for display in the new British Golf Museum at St Andrews and in 2000 a third was made for use in traveling exhibitions, and a fourth was created in 2003 for the same purpose.

Memorable moment: In 1999, Paul Lawrie completed the greatest comeback in Open history, starting the final round 10 strokes off the lead while being assisted by Jean Van de Velde’s unforgettable triple bogey on the 18th hole.

Recognizing Everyday Greatness: Rick Leonetti

Rick LeonettiIn 2002 Rick Leonetti was elected president of Council Rock North High School Football Booster Club and started on a mission to get student athletes and booster members to help others who are less fortunate. What started as club volunteer work with the Special Olympics has grown into the Regional charity: Athletes Helping Athletes.

The mission of Athletes Helping Athletes, Inc. is to connect local special needs athletes with mainstream student-athletes in the spirit of friendship for their mutual benefit and inspiration. AHA, Inc. believes that a world of greater acceptance for all can begin with our children, sharing athletic experiences and a love for sport while developing compassion and mutual respect. Founded in 2001 Athletes Helping Athletes (AHA) provides funding to special needs organizations throughout Bucks County while building awareness, and offering extra-curricular events.

Spike shoot & EDG1 046For many children with special needs finding social acceptance can be challenging. “We started to find opportunity through a series of sports programs for special needs children when we met Rick Leonetti who introduced us to the world of AHA. What a great idea…. What a better way to bridge the gap of social acceptance than to partner typical peers with special needs children in one of the most universally accepted activities –SPORTS.”  Roseann Fox

Rick has worked tirelessly raising tens of thousands of dollars and organizing AHA events like Football Fun Nights, Soccer Fun Days, and Spring Training Baseball Days where students from main stream schools and those from the special needs community can get together to play ball, have fun, and build friendships. “Jen discovered a bit about herself and how helping others can bring a sense of goodness, self worth, and satisfaction that is hard to match. These experiences are helping her understand what she wants to pursue as a career path.” Bernie.

These events help to build a community for special needs athletes and their families. Building confidence, and providing a place for special needs athletes to fulfill their desire to participate in sports. “Dylans confidence is through the roof right now…..[he] has been practicing baseball practicing baseball since the baseball clinic and has been non-stop talking about his Pirates team.” Diane

With out the persistent efforts of Rick Leonetti this amazing organization would not be in existence today, he has touch the lives of many in his community and exemplified greatness to many young students.

RL Plaque

*** Quotes/excerpts in this article have been taken from testimonials found on the Athletes Helping Athletes site. To read the full stories sent to AHA please visit: and click on the “Testimonials” link on the left hand side.

Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame 10th Induction Class

On June 6th the Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame held a Press Conference at the Society Hill Sheraton in Philadelphia to announce Class X inductees to the Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame.

The seventeen new inductees bring the total number of Inductees to 152! They come from 14 different sports at the professional, collegiate, and scholastic level as well as 14 Legacy of Excellence inductees that consist of radio & TV broadcasters, sportswriters, authors, and other contributors both local & national.

This years inductees include former Phillies player Greg Luzinski a member of the 1980 world Series Championship team, Linda Page a local high school All-American basketball player while attending Dobbins Tech, and Joe Hand Sr.(Legacy of Excellence) a local Boxing promoter who helped guide Joe Frazier to the Heavyweight Championship and pioneered closed-circuit sporting events.

The Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame is an all volunteer non-profit corporation founded in May 2002. Recently opening up its first public display gallery, at Spike’s Trophies, fans can go view the Preview Gallery Saturdays and during the week by appointment. The Gallery showcases items that represent Philadelphia History such as pieces of the original Palestra floor, a jersey worn by Philadelphia Eagles Hall of Famer Chuck Bednarik, and a complete set of 1930 World Series Tickets.  Some exhibits will rotate throughout the year to showcase different athletes from the area’s sports history.

Come check it out at:

Spike’s Trophies:

2701 Grant Ave

Philadelphia PA 19112

Saturdays 9am-1pm or make an appointment by calling 215.923.5121
Inductee Class X

Recognizing Everyday Greatness- Connie & Hank Angus

Hank Angus starting the run in 2012

Connie and Hank Angus are two of the strongest and most inspirational people I know. Each year they bring together complete and total strangers and form a family with one common goal, to help beat pediatric cancer.

On September 15, 2004 they received the most devastating news of their lives, their 4 year old son Gabe was diagnosed with Leukemia. With the help of Penn State THON, Four Diamonds Fund (FDF), and Hershey medical Gabe is now 13 and completely healthy. In fact this past November he celebrated his 5 year remission!

As amazing as that is it’s not the story I want to share with you. In 2007 Hank & Connie decided they wanted to give back, the plan was to run 135 miles from Hershey Medical Center to Penn State the weekend of their 46 hour dance marathon(where most of the funding for FDF comes from) to bring letters to the dancer from the kids at Hershey who are too sick to attend.

They got together other FDF families and started the Hope Express, then called THON Express. Hope Express is a team of 16 runners who run 135 miles (and an 8 person Extreme team who run 140miles) over a 24 hour period. The team consists of THON alumni as well as current and past Four Diamonds Families. Just as THON dancers participate in the no-sitting, no-sleeping, two day dance marathon held every February, enduring hours of fatigue, pain and delirium, the Hope Express runners will have to endure the cold, harsh, winter weather of a very cold night in February.

To make this happen Connie, Hank, and their three children: Gabe, Veronica, and Sydney give up a good deal of their free time to coordinate Fundraising, runner selection process, and pick a team of moralers to help along the route. They open up their home to all the runners, moralers, and countless Penn State Students for various weekends through out the year.

Bringing THON alumni together they form a family out of complete strangers. Inspiring hope in each person involved they ban together with one goal in mind: to help the families of children battling cancer. They inspire every person they meet to believe that nothing is impossible, that with hard work, strength, and family even the craziest ideas can become a reality.

In 2013 the Hope Express raised over $93,000 for the FDF and their goal continues to grow each year. They go above and beyond each day to help families and children they have never met in the hopes that one day no parent will ever have to hear the words “your child has cancer”.

The Angus Family After the Run

The Angus Family After the Run

How Grammy Winners are Chosen

Grammy Award

If you are anything like me the Grammys are about sitting around with friends to watch over the top performances (remember Pinks acrobatics in 2012?), gawk over the gorgeous gowns you could never afford, and make fun of the obnoxious gowns you would never want to afford (not going to lie – this is my favorite part of the whole night).

However, I’ve never really thought about how the winners are decided, they just happen. There is actually a fairly long process that goes into this decision and unlike American Idol and VMA’s we get no say. Grammy nominations are decided by The National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences(NARAS).

NARAS was formed in 1957 and consists of musicians, producers, recording engineers and various other reordering professionals. Since 1959  have been best known for the Grammy Awards or “Gramophone Awards” as it was originally called; named after the trophy which is a small golden gramophone.(old fashioned but a golden i-pod would probably looks silly)

The Grammys always acknowledge achievements from the year prior- so the 2013 Grammys are for albums that came out in 2012. Nominations are made by record companies and individuals online with a physical copy of the work to be sent in to the NARAS.

One hundred and fifty music experts are appointed with the task of going through the nominations for all 81 categories and deciding if it meets the criteria for the category it has been nominated for. This list is then sent out to all NARAS members to vote on.

All members vote within the general fields (not restricted by genera):

  • Record of the Year
  • Album of the Year
  • Song of the Year
  • Best New Artist

    They then choose 9 out of the 29 other fields to vote in.(ex: Pop , Latin, Gospel)  The top five nominees from each category become the Grammy Nominees that get announced to the world……. the process is still not over!!

    The top five are voted on by all Recording Academy Members who again vote in the general categories and then choose 8 out of the 30 fields (preferable ones they have experience in).

    Votes are counted and Winners are announced live at the Grammys. Though I don’t always agree with the winners chosen; for the Artist it’s an accomplishment that is recognized by their peers and not just their fans. And no nominee walks away empty handed, for those who do not win the Gramophone Award, there is a medal given out(see below)- the design for which has varied over the years.

    So tune in February 10th 8pm EST to see what Gaga wears next, watch Elton John perform with Ed Sheeran, and find out who the Academy has deemed the best of 2012.

    If you want to learn more about how the Grammy itself is made click here:

    1971 Grammy Medallion

    1971 Grammy Medallion