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Prince George slo-pitch tournament raises nearly $10K for pediatric care

Charity organizer touched by community’s generosity for event five years in the making

“Words can not even describe how I’m feeling right now.”

That’s the reaction from Brad Orser, who helped bring the Dirty Fingers’ Fall Shocker slo-pitch tournament to fruition this past weekend in acting as a fundraiser for pediatric care at the University Hospital of Northern B.C. (UHNBC).

He set an initial goal of $5,000, but to his surprise and delight, the total almost doubled coming in at $9,290.

Speaking with PrinceGeorgeMatters this morning (Sept. 16), Orser was at a loss for words, but ultimately grateful for the city’s ball community in coming together for the cause.

“It’s astonishing how they were able to come together,” he said. “It’s truly amazing and I’m overwhelmed by our community support [...] When we were doing the totals, we had a group of people standing around to see how we did. I had my mom there, my brother was there; there were a lot of tears from that. It really hit home; relief is not the word, but wow, we just did it.”

Orser lost a daughter five years ago to a defected heart after spending several weeks and months in Children’s Hospital with his family, which inspired his idea among his Dirty Fingers slo-pitch team to get this event off the ground.

A dozen teams weathered the rainy and wet conditions at the Nechako Park Fields for the three-day tournament, all thinking of the kids the hospital and Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation caters to on a daily basis.

“They battled with it and, at first, that really scared me. I didn’t know if we were going to be able to hit our target just because we weren’t going to get people out there. But they didn’t care about the rain, people played in torrential downpours, they came to the silent auction tents and made their bids; people came out for this cause.”

The champions from each division decided to donate their winnings to the pot on top of the $3,000 from entry fees.

The silent auction brought in $3,200, which included baseball bats, tires, a night stay at the Pomeroy Inn, and gift cards or packages donated by local businesses.

Orser says this is ‘100 per cent’ going to become an annual event, with plans already in the works for this Spring with running a tournament over the 2020 May long weekend.

“I know it’s too early to say this, but I’m hoping we can double what we made this year,” he said with excitement, which would see a fundraising goal of $20,000. “We’ve already spoken with Spirit of the North about doing something bigger. Being on a long weekend, we’re hoping to get four more teams entered into it with some special events. I’d like to see a beer garden set up and such.”

The Crew were the ‘A’ division winners with the Benders finishing second and the Dirty Fingers finishing in third.

In the ‘B’ Division, it was Liquor Box, Auto Magic, and Pitches Be Crazy going one, two, and three respectively.

Orser would like to thank all the teams for participating in the tournament despite the uncooperative weather and for understanding that this tournament was about more than slo-pitch.

He also gives a shout out to the following:

  • Dirty Fingers ball club
  • Devon Devereux
  • C.I.F Construction
  • White Spruce Enterprises
  • Landtran Logistics
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