Celebrity Softball Brings Support … (video)

Celebrity Softball Brings Support and Wisdom for Boys and Girls Club (video)

(Crystal A. Proxmire, June 29, 2014)

Before going to bat with an eclectic mix of all-stars and celebrities, Garden Fresh Salsa founder Jack Aronson and his dinos02sidelogo3wife Annette were presented with the Ray Odem Award. The award came from humanitarian efforts like Saturday’s Team Hollis celebrity softball fundraiser, and from trips over the past two years to the Dominican Republic to bring sports equipment to impoverished youth.

The excitement took place Saturday in Martin Road Park in Ferndale. The beneficiary of the fundraiser was the Boys and Girls Club of Oakland and Macomb Counties, an organization with four locations and 2,800 youth who use their progStreet-Eatzz-Adrams. Since 2001 every senior who has used their programs has graduated from high school.

Team Hollis is a team with players over 60 from all around the country. The members came to Ferndale to play at their own expense. Celebrity guests did as well, including Amy Andrews, Taryn Asher and Jason Carr of Fox 2, Mark Hackel – Macomb County Executive, Ike Blessitt -former Detroit Tiger, Daniel Hush Carlisle – Rapper/DJ, Stan Clarke – former Toronto Blue Jay, David Coulter – Mayor of Ferndale, boxer Willie “Fortune 500”, Kerri Gallagher – Staff of Detroit Tigers, Eddie Mio – former Detroit Red Wings, John Ogrodnick – former Detroit Red Wing, PAWS – Detroit Tiger mascot, Dave Reneski – World Champion in Samurai weapons, Rich Strenger – former Detroit Lion, Alexandrea Thrubis – manager of community affairskeith dalton ad for Detroit Tigers, Tom Timmermann – former Detroit Tiger, Marty Turco – former Dallas Stars & U of Michigan goaltender.

Team Hollis played against the Wayne-Oakland Police Team, before mixing with celebrities for the big game.

Ray Hollis presented the Aronsons with the award. “As we age, as we get older, we’ve been through all the things in life and we realize now when we quit looking at ourselves what is important,” he said. “It’s important to give back.

Aronson talkedsidebar01sponsor about his own growth over the years. “I’ve changed. I used to be real competitive, a little bit of a bad sport,” he said. “But as I got older I started getting the game and I know that you only get one chance to make an impression with the guys you play with. …What’s more important, you getting a hit and everybody think that you’re an idiot, or that you’re trying your best for your team and being respectful to the other guys?”dda_ad_04

Along with Aronson, Team Hollis has brought over 700 baseball bats and gloves to the Dominican Republic. Aronson said that even though about 20% of Major League Baseball Players come from there, the youth lack equipment and will often play a whole game with everyone sharing one bat.

Among many local projects, Aronson and his company Garden Fresh support the Boys and Girls Club. waterworkThanks to his generosity the Club was able to open a branch inside the Ferndale Recreation Center for during the school year. The Royal Oak Boys and Girls Club operates year round providing activities and guidance for kids at cost of $25 per membership.

“If you ever wonder why this country is so great, its days like this. All of you who took the time to come out here and care about a cause bigger than yourself – in our cause,” said Boys and Girls Club Chief Operating Officer Brett Tillander.  The Team Hollis Celebrity Softball game has raised over $15,000 thus far for the organization.

For more information on Boys and Girls Club see http://www.boysandgirlsclubs.us/.

For more on Garden Fresh see http://www.gardenfreshsalsa.com/.

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