charity

Local comedian giving back to community with laughs and fundraising dollars

 

 

By Jolene Perron

 

Since 1979, Leo Dufour has been doing professional comedy. His first performances were in front of his high school peers at General Amherst, and according to Dufour the evening was a “smashing success” and it fueled his desire to pursue a career making people laugh.

For a year, he and his wife Diane tried material out and whatever bars and nightclubs they could, and finally began Dufour’s professional career at Mark Ridley’s Comedy Castle in Detroit.

Eventually, Dufour opened up his own nightclub in Windsor called “The Komedy Korner,” and it was open for 10 years. When it closed, Dufour continued to book shows at area bars, and opened up “Komedy Korner” in Windsor again, at 1269 Ottawa St.

Comedian Leo Dufour performs during a recent show at Shooter's. He and wife Diane help put on comedy shows to benefit local charities.

Comedian Leo Dufour performs during a recent show at Shooter’s. He and wife Diane help put on comedy shows to benefit local charities.

According to his bio on his website, “His lovable delivery and his man-child qualities make Leo a perennial favourite among young and old alike.”

They duo make an incredible team, with Dufour pursuing his dream of entertainment, and Diane assisting him with his day-to-day operations, booking shows, as well as talking with charity groups to assist in fundraising.

“We have been offering comedy shows as a fundraiser to help organizations raise money for their charity, group or team,” explained Diane. “It’s a fun way to raise money for groups and it’s good for the local community.”

Diane explained the different packages offered to the groups can help them earn anywhere from $750-$1,500.

For more information if you know someone who would like to do a fundraiser, contact Leo’s Komedy Korner through e-mail at didufour@hotmail.com, or call 519-736-8269 ask for Diane. You can also their webpage at www.komedykorner.com.

Charity hockey game raises $1,100 for Amherstburg Food and Fellowship Mission

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

A charity hockey game held over the Christmas holidays resulted in a recent donation of $1,100 to the Amherstburg Food and Fellowship Mission.

The game was organized by Wes Ewer and a group of his friends. Ewer, co-owner and general manager of the Integrity Amherstburg Admirals, organized the game after the Dec. 30 Admirals’ home game but noted the tradition started a number of years ago.

“Basically the game itself started five years ago,” said Ewer. “As my group of friends starting getting older and some of our group had departed Amherstburg for work and family responsibilities elsewhere, I looked for an opportunity to get everyone together; and could think of no more fitting way than a hockey game.”

That led to a group of 32 friends renting the ice at the Libro Centre for 90 minutes, drafting teams, playing a game and have some social time after.

“Going into this year, I wanted to switch things up a bit,” said Ewer. “Normally we design and purchase jerseys each year for all the players. This year, (Admirals co-owner) Matt (Fox) and I decided to just use the practice jerseys we have accumulated with the Admirals to save some time and money. Instead of dropping the cost per player for the game, we kept our normal price and told the players we would donate the money somewhere to a local cause or family that could use it. The reception on my idea was a unanimous yes from the group of players.”

A charity hockey game at the Libro Centre in December raised $1,100 for the Amherstburg Food and Fellowship Mission. (Submitted photo)

A charity hockey game at the Libro Centre in December raised $1,100 for the Amherstburg Food and Fellowship Mission. (Submitted photo)

Some suggested upping our fee for the game to increase the donation, Ewer added.

“After discussion with many of the players, we decided to donate to the Amherstburg Mission. Our original donation was going to be $300 which we thought would certainly help and we’re proud of. One of our players (Mark Bondy) has close ties with the McAllister family and once he found out the recipient I had decided to go with, he personally matched our donation,” said Ewer. “After that, Mark got his employer on board and Morton Industrial -with no hesitation whatsoever – added $500 to our cause. So for our first go round at donating some money, we were able to get $1,100 to a great local cause.”

Ewer said they all were happy to support the Amherstburg Food and Fellowship Mission.

“I can speak for all of the players in the game that it felt great to be able to positively impact a cause that helps so many local people out,” said Ewer. “Ninety-five per cent of the players in the game were born in Amherstburg or still currently live here so it made our Christmas and our annual game a lot more special.”

Tim McAllister, president of the Amherstburg Food and Fellowship Mission’s board of directors, thanked “a solid group of guys” for making the donation.

“Not only did they donate money, they donated their time to organize this annual hockey game,” said McAllister. “With the combined effort with Morton’s, $1,100 was donated. This money donated will go towards our mission of people helping people.”

Pat Thrasher Memorial Golf Tournament raises big bucks for MS

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Last Saturday turned out to be a beautiful day for golf but, more importantly, a beautiful day to raise money for a worthwhile cause.

The 14th annual Pat Thrasher Memorial Golf Tournament was presented at Sutton Creek Golf Club in McGregor with 144 golfers hitting the links in the sold-out tournament. All proceeds went to benefit the fight against Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

The 14th annual Pat Thrasher Memorial Golf Tournament raised about $15,000 last Saturday. From left: Karrie and Wes Thrasher, Lindsay Gyori and Jackie Putterman from the MS Society.

The 14th annual Pat Thrasher Memorial Golf Tournament raised about $15,000 last Saturday. From left: Karrie and Wes Thrasher, Lindsay Gyori and Jackie Putterman from the MS Society.

“We’re here to celebrate and continue a passion my dad had to raise money for MS and we are doing it with success,” said Wes Thrasher, Pat’s eldest son and tournament organizer.

Giving back to the community was an environment he said that he and his family, which include sister Rebecca and Lindsay and brother Brady as well as his mom Jayne, have always been involved in.

“It’s something we grew up in,” he said.

Picking up Pat’s torch was something the rest of the family wanted to do, Wes added.

“It helps the grieving process,” he said.

Early estimates have the tournament raising about $15,000 this year. Proceeds will go to help local patients with a variety of needs from equipment to treatments as well as educational products. Some will also go towards further research, with Wes noting that clinical trials are underway involving stem cells.

“We are part of that success today,” he said.

The fact people still keep coming out and supporting the tournament named for Pat Thrasher shows the legacy he still has.

“It’s really heartwarming,” said Wes.

Admirals, cops to battle in annual charity hockey game

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Ontario Special Olympics will get a financial boost April 29 thanks to the Amherstburg Police Service and the Integrity Amherstburg Admirals.

The teams will square off at the Libro Centre that Friday night in a game that will contribute to the police service’s Law Enforcement Torch Run efforts. All Torch Run proceeds go to the Special Olympics.

Sgt. Mike Cox said the charity game has been taking place in Amherstburg for over 20 years in various forms. The opponents have changed over the years and now it is the Admirals who are helping raise money.

Cox said the “Polar Plunge” held earlier this year at St. Clair College helped Torch Run efforts substantially. That event had 181 “plungers” and raised $48,500.

Amherstburg police and the Amherstburg Admirals will team up for a charity hockey game April 29  to benefit the Torch Run. The Torch Run’s proceeds go towards Special Olympics. From left: Sgt. Melissa Taylor, Sgt. Mike Cox and Admirals co-owner/general manager Wes Ewer.

Amherstburg police and the Amherstburg Admirals will team up for a charity hockey game April 29
to benefit the Torch Run. The Torch Run’s proceeds go towards Special Olympics. From left: Sgt. Melissa Taylor, Sgt. Mike Cox and Admirals co-owner/general manager Wes Ewer.

“We had great success with the Polar Plunge,” said Cox. “We’re hoping to raise as much money as we can (at the hockey game) for Special Olympics.”

There is a $2 minimum donation to get into the game with tickets available at the police station, General Amherst High School or at the door. There will be door prizes and giveaways with Torch Run T-shirts and Admirals souvenirs like foam fingers, lanyards, clappers and other items to be given away.

Addy, the Admirals’ mascot, will also be on hand.

Wes Ewer, co-owner and general manager of the Admirals, said the coaches and management will be playing for the police team that night and going against the players.

“The coaches and players will be excited to go against each other,” he said. “I’m looking forward to a police victory.”

Ewer said the Jr. C franchise is always eager to help the community and they hope to get people to come out that night. The game is scheduled to run from 7-9 p.m.

The Torch Run itself will be May 25 with it scheduled to begin at the police station around lunchtime. A barbecue will be held prior to the event with staff and those supported by Community Living Essex County’s Channel Resource Centre to be on hand. Cox said the entire community is welcome to the barbecue and to participate in the run.

McGregor Mug Run and International Beer Festival returns Aug. 22

 

McGregor Mug Run logoSpecial to the RTT

 

The fourth Annual McGregor Mug Run and International Beer Festival is set for Saturday, August 22, at Co-An Park in McGregor.

After the success of last year’s beer festival which hosted breweries from all across Ontario, the McGregor Mug Run is expanding to include incredible breweries from all over the globe. Confirmed so far are returning breweries Flying Monkey, Bayside Brewing Co., Highland Brewing Co., as well as local breweries Walkerville Brewery,  Brew Windsor, Craftheads Brewing Co., and Motor Craft Ales. A full list of breweries can be found online at http://www.mcgregormugrun.com/#!breweries/caps

The International Beer Festival will be limited to capacity for ages 19 and over, and will feature two stages that will host Canadian talent. Sponsored by Country 95.9, Stage 1 will feature local country singer Kelsi Mayne, Brampton-based indie folk rockers Rag Maple, and Toronto folk quintet Union Duke. Stage 2 will feature rock music from Kingston’s Between the Hollows, as well as local acts Years of Ernest and Sieraslave.

Tickets for the International Beer Festival are $25 in advance at www.McGregorBeerFest.com or $35 at the door. Entry fee includes four drink tokens and a commemorative mug.

This year also marks the fourth year of the 5K Mug Run, which starts at 3 p.m. Online registration for the race is available at www.McGregorMugRun.com.  The run is limited to 500 entrants, with the option for admission to the International Beer Festival for a discounted price. Full pricing breakdowns can be found on the McGregor Mug Run and International Beer Festival’s official website.

Once again, the McGregor Mug Run and International Beer Festival will be raising money for charity. Proceeds from the event will go to the Epilepsy Support Centre and the Essex Region Conservation Foundation’s “Trail On!” campaign.

The McGregor Mug Run and International Beer Festival encourages attendees to drink responsibly. A shuttle service will be available for patrons from Windsor, Essex, LaSalle, Amherstburg, Harrow, and Kingsville.