Words+Interview: Sumona Roy
Hall of Famer Roberto Alomar and Andre (The Hawk) Dawson teamed up with Major League Baseball Alumni for a good cause – Michael Garron Hospital’s Grand SlamCelebrity Softball Tournament.
The Grand Slam Celebrity Softball Tournament was sponsored by Toronto Honda, Toronto Kia and Scotiabank, is a baseball fundraising event in the GTA. Fundraising teams had the privilege of playing alongside some of Major League Baseball’s greatest alumni.
Proceeds from Grand Slam 2016 will enhance Michael Garron Hospital’s acclaimed mental health programs; serving people with critical mental health challenges. Renowned for our innovative Building Bridges therapeutic/academic program – which enables teens, whose severe anxiety prevents them from attending school, to earn school credits while receiving treatment – is now serving as a model for other programs across the province.
Teams committed to raise a minimum of $25,000 in order to draft a Major League Baseball alumnus to join their team and compete in the tournament.
The tournament ends with the championship game where the highest fundraising team, along with the five highest individual fundraisers, play against the MLB Alumni All-Star Team.
It is a fun competitions – including a home run derby – great prizes, silent & live auctions, abundant refreshments throughout, and plenty of opportunities to mix and mingle with celebrities.
The impact of donations to this event are doubled – with each dollar raised unlocking an additional dollar from the Garron Family.
“We are deeply committed to a new standard in health care for our community. Our patients and their families are at the heart of everything we do at Michael Garron Hospital“, said Michael Burns, Chair of the TEGH Foundation. “Your support of the Grand Slam Celebrity Softball Tournament will truly make a difference. The funds raised will help each and every person who enters our doors, particularly teens struggling with mental health challenges.”
The two-day Grand Slam tournament kicked off with a Celebrity Draft Party, the evening of Friday May 13th at MUZIK for participants, celebrities and invited guests.
The event had amazing food, drink and of course mingling with many celebrities. Toronto’s Mayor John Tory was also present to kick-off the event.
- Honorary Commissioner Paul Godfrey, President and CEO, Postmedia Network
- Honorary General Manager Alex Anthopoulos
- Tyler Currie, Director, International Affairs, National Hockey League Players’ Association
- Dr. Rajiv Singal, MD, FRCSC Endourology, Urologic Cancer and Robotics Surgery
- Ben Sykes, Michael Garron Hospital Principle & Vice President
- Gardiner Roberts Avison Young Commercial Real Estate Inc. and George Tory Associate, LLP.
- Roberto Alomar Baseball Hall of Fame Inductee, 2 x World Series Champion, 12 x All-Star, 10 x Gold Glove Winner
- Andre Dawson 8 x All Star, NL MVP, NL Rookie of the Year
- Cecil Fielder 3 x All-Star, World Series Champion, 2 x Silver Slugger Award
- Devon White 3 x World Series Champion, All-Star, 7 X Gold Gloves
- Duane Ward All-Star, 2-time World Series Champion
- Frank Catalanotto MLB Alumni
- George Bell Baseball Hall of Fame Inductee, Major League Player of the Year, AL MVP, 3x All-Star
- Jesse Barfield All-star, two-time Gold Glove winner
- Jose Canseco 2-time World Series Champion, 6-time All-Star, AL MVP, AL Rookie of the Year
- Kelly Gruber 2 x All-Star, World Series Champion, Gold Glove Award, Silver Slugger Award
- Lloyd Moseby All-star, Silver Sluggers Winner
- Mario Diaz MLB Alumni;
- Mookie Wilson World Series Champion;
- Rich Butler MLB Alumni;
- Rob Butler World Series Champion and former Toronto Blue Jay;
- Tanyon Sturtze MLB Alumni;
- Tim Raines 7 x All-Star, 3 x World Series Champion, Silver Slugger Award;
- Willie Upshaw MLB Alumni
Images courtesy of bkonthescene