NHL All-Stars and the community hit it out of the park for mental health care and the KGH Foundation
KELOWNA, BC – June 26, 2023 – An incredible example of community, camaraderie and caring was on display this weekend at the Gorges-Comeau Homebase Charity Slo-Pitch Tournament presented by Raymond James. There were laughs and smiles all around as NHL stars Blake Comeau and Josh Gorges and several of their heavy-hitter friends came together for two days of slo-pitch fun, helping to raise over $175,000 in support of the KGH Foundation.
Coming off of a successful 2022 Homebase event, the fourth annual Homebase Charity Slo-Pitch Tournament on June 23 and 24 saw eighteen current and former NHL players trade their sticks for bats and a little friendly competition. Among the stars were Duncan Keith, Carey Price, Damon Severson, Mike Smith and Jordin Tootoo.
On Friday, June 23, the NHL All-Star Match was played to a sellout crowd at Elks Stadium. It was a great night for a softball showdown, with all proceeds from the game and the weekend tournament supporting the KGH Foundation’s ‘Closer to home than you think’ campaign, specifically, its commitment to providing immediate and systemic support for local mental health care services and programs.
The anticipation for the event was palpable, with tickets to the All-Star game on Friday evening selling out in advance. The community’s overwhelming support demonstrated just how beloved the event is. But the significance of Homebase stretches far beyond the ball diamonds.
“Homebase couldn’t take place without the incredible support of our generous community,” says Allison Young, CEO of the KGH Foundation. “It is always amazing to see how the community can come together, united in their desire to make a difference and help drive health care forward. In this case, we are united in our aim to support mental health care, a cause that is close to home for so many. By coming together, we will create lasting change right here in our community, where it matters most.”
That generous community includes Blake Comeau, Josh Gorges, their NHL friends, other local celebrity players, numerous sponsors, community teams, volunteers and everyone who supported Homebase through ticket purchases for the Friday match, food purchases during the game, supporting OKGN Lifestyle’s Homebase Capsule Collection, or taking part in the silent auction and 50/50 draw.
“In addition to our Diamond, Dugout, Media, and Safe-Ride home sponsors, a huge shout-out goes to Raymond James Kelowna, who has been the presenting sponsor of this event since the very beginning,” says Allison. “We are grateful for their support.”
That support included Erica Whiteley, Branch Manager for Raymond James, catching the first pitch of the game to kick off the Friday night NHL All-Star Match at Elks Stadium, drawing a packed crowd that eagerly cheered on their favorite players. The following day, tournament play took place at Mission Sports Fields, showcasing the teamwork of the different teams from throughout the community. The NHL players undoubtedly stole the show, providing an unforgettable experience for all attendees and players.
However, the true winners of this event are those who will benefit from the over $175,000 raised. This substantial amount will support immediate and long-term, upstream investments in our community’s mental health and wellness while fostering collaboration and innovation within the mental health care system.
For more information about Homebase or the KGH Foundation, please visit kghfoundation.com.
Since 1978, the KGH Foundation has worked with a generous community to raise funds to support world-class healthcare close to home for a rapidly expanding and diverse population in the interior of B.C. Today, the KGH Foundation is the lead fundraising organization for Kelowna General Hospital and its associated facilities, JoeAnna’s House and Central Okanagan Hospice House.
2023 Homebase images available for use. Please credit A-Game Photography.
Maria Lee, Marketing Manager