Bills, Dion Dawkins help make a fantastic 10th birthday for Ohio boy


Ohio native Kenly Getz had a memorable 10th birthday party at La Nova Pizzeria on Sunday after picking a trip to Buffalo over a Nintendo Switch for his birthday.

His mother, Heather Getz, was born in Buffalo and raised in Chillicothe, Ohio where she lives now with her two sons Kenly and Carson. The three are all big Bills fans and came to Buffalo for Easter in April. Once they tried Buffalo pizza, they were hooked and wanted to come back for more.

"Kenly wanted to come for his birthday, but he also wanted a [Nintendo] Switch," Heather Getz said. "So, you know I'm a single parent, so I told him one. He can choose one and so he asked if we come to Buffalo, would he get pizza when he got here then I said yeah and he was like, 'I'm going to Buffalo.'"

When the family arrived at La Nova Pizzeria on Main St. in Williamsville, Dion Dawkins and Billy Buffalo were there to help celebrate Kenly's birthday. Dawkins brought out a birthday cake and he along with the La Nova staff sang Happy Birthday to him as he entered. 

The fun started when Dawkins and the two Getz boys started to make their own pizzas. Dawkins was impressed by the pizza-making skills of both Kenly and Carson.

"I was actually really impressed like his pizza came out almost perfect," Dawkins said. "It wasn't lopsided, all the crust was perfectly done and I'm like man this kid is a natural-born winner. But I'm just happy that he's happy with the results that he got, he put the work in today and he got it done."

One of the owners of La Nova Pizzeria, Carla Todaro-Pantano, was there to help teach the three all the steps to make the perfect pizza. Her generosity along with her family and the other staff at La Nova's made a big impact on Getz's birthday celebration and she came prepared to make sure this was a special day for him. Todaro-Pantano arrived at the Pizzeria at 7 am on Sunday morning to guarantee that everything was in order, for the party at noon and she thought that Kenly had a great day.

"It went great, it went great," Todaro-Pantano said. "Especially with my nephews and my daughter I couldn't have done it without them and the La Nova staff and my managers. When it comes to kids, I have a really big heart. We just wanted to make sure that he had a really special day and I really think he did. We got him a birthday cake and balloons and just what a 10-year-old boy would like."

The party then moved from inside the kitchen to outside where the family and Dawkins got to eat the delicious pizza that they had just made. Before they all started eating, Billy Buffalo came out with a surprise for the birthday boy. Getz opened the box to find a Stefon Diggs signed football that was a gift from the Buffalo Bills. He was so excited and enjoyed the entire party that he wasn't expecting. Kenly thought he was coming to Buffalo to try pizza around town, but the city of good neighbors made this a birthday he will never forget. Dawkins was glad and honored to be a part of his very special day.

"For a fan or just anybody who would appreciate this, I'm here for it," Dawkins stated. "And for his birthday, he seems very happy, and very excited. I'm just very blessed and honored to be able to do this for him. Hopefully, he'll top it next year and get Josh or Stefon or somebody dope. But I'm just happy that I can be an impact in this kid's life and it's the small things that matter. This thing costs me nothing but time, I'm here for him and hope he has a wonderful rest of his birthday."

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