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Slo-pitch tourney to raise money for breast cancer research

A slo-pitch tournament set for Airdrie this weekend will do more than provide exciting competition, as its main goal is to raise money in the continuing fight against breast cancer.
Participants in last year’s Batting Against Breast Cancer slo-pitch tournament show off their pink uniforms, while raising more than $45,000 for the cause. This
Participants in last year’s Batting Against Breast Cancer slo-pitch tournament show off their pink uniforms, while raising more than $45,000 for the cause. This year’s event, featuring 14 teams Aug. 7 at Airdrie’s Chinook Winds Ballpark, will try to raise more than $75,000 for breast cancer research and continued education programs across the province.

A slo-pitch tournament set for Airdrie this weekend will do more than provide exciting competition, as its main goal is to raise money in the continuing fight against breast cancer.

Batting Against Breast Cancer will take place at the Chinook Winds Ballpark between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m., Aug. 7, in an effort to fundraise further research and education programs across the province.

The event has been taking place in other cities for the past five years, but this is it’s second year in the Calgary area, and the first time it will be held in Airdrie, with last year’s tournament in Chestermere raising more than $45,000.

“This year we’re hoping to raise a minimum of $75,000 and we’re already at about 65 per cent of our goal with the event day still to come,” said Willow Ridley, coordinator of urban partnerships for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation.

“It’s one of our signature events for the foundation and I think it’s really going to start growing rapidly after this year, especially with the community support Airdrie has shown.”

The move to Airdrie this year was made because of the facilities at Chinook Winds, as well as support shown by the City and its residents.

“The biggest thing was the venue, as it’s got room for us to grow and we’re going to try and keep it there in future years,” Ridley said.

“We’ve also got a pretty strong involvement with Airdrie and there are three or four teams based in Airdrie.”

The 14 teams participating in the event, up from nine last year, are required to raise at least $2,500 each, although many of them have surpassed that amount.

“We’ve got one team at $4,500 already and that’s just from online donations,” Ridley said.

“It’s all about the cause and it has nothing to do with winning or losing,” said Lee Gill, The Cure’s team captain and member of the organizing committee.

“But it’s also for fun as well and people just have a good time playing. You’ll see more pink in one day than you will see any other day of the year and it’s just for a good cause. There are some people there that are survivors and some ladies that still suffer from cancer.”

The top fundraiser will be awarded a Via Rail pass, while the top fundraising team will earn a Shuswap house boating trip for up to 22 people.

But Ridley said teams are mostly there for fun and to support of the cause.

“I think it is a combination and everybody is participating for their own reasons, some because of the cause, some because of the fun factor,” she said.

“But I think what sets us apart is that it is a unique fundraising event. There are so many different walks, runs and bikes going on that you don’t often see an event that is baseball-focused.

“I think that really encourages people to fundraise.”

There will be a pancake breakfast, a raffle and silent auction, family activities, a beer garden, a live DJ and local band Sonic Diplomat will perform from 1-4 p.m.

“We’ve got a huge variety of activities throughout the day which are kid-friendly and adult-friendly,” Ridley said. “I’d encourage people to come out, as it’s going to be a good time.”

For more information, visit www.battingagainstbc.com


Airdrie City View Staff

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