FORT MYERS, Fla. (March 3, 2014) – For the fourth consecutive year, the Boston Red Sox completed a series of events and activities from Feb. 21 to 26 that gave back to communities throughout Southwest Florida.
Highlights of the week included 14,000 guests and fans attending a free-admission Spring Training Open House at JetBlue Park at Fenway South, uniformed personnel and front office staff volunteering at various nonprofits across Southwest Florida, and two longtime fundraising efforts that help children in need throughout Southwest Florida.
“For many years we have supported various fundraisers in Southwest Florida, and three years ago, we began adding additional activities to highlight the good work of organizations in Lee County that, every day, are serving people here who are most in need,” said Katie Haas, senior director of Florida business operations. “This year we branched out even further into the community to celebrate the third year of JetBlue Park and Fenway South and spend time helping even more of our community neighbors.”
The week of service began Friday, Feb. 21 with the 21st Annual Boston Red Sox Children’s Hospital Celebrity Classic golf tournament, benefiting the Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida, at the Forest Country Club in South Fort Myers.
On Saturday, Feb. 22, the Boston Red Sox hosted its annual Spring Training Open House at JetBlue Park, a free event open to the public featuring a variety of family-friendly activities, the World Series trophies, player autographs and more. A Florida Blood Center bloodmobile was also onsite and collected 79 donated units of blood, which will save up to 237 patients’ lives.
The Ninth Annual Evening with the Red Sox, benefiting the Boys & Girls Clubs of Lee County, took place on Monday, Feb. 24 at JetBlue Park with a record of 370 guests in attendance raising nearly $120,000 to fund the BGCLC’s programs which help the community’s at-risk youth achieve academic success, develop character and leadership, and live healthier lifestyles.
On Tuesday, Feb. 25 and Wednesday, Feb. 26, Red Sox players Dustin Pedroia, Mike Napoli, Ryan Lavarnway, Blake Swihart, Brandon Workman, Deven Marrerro and Anthony Ranaudo along with front office staff spent the afternoons volunteering with Child Care of Southwest Florida, Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida and Community Cooperative Ministries, Inc.’s Backpack Program at Treeline Elementary.
2014 RED SOX WEEK OF COMMUNITY SERVICE
Friday, Feb. 21 – 21st Annual Boston Red Sox Children’s Hospital Celebrity Classic
Members of the Red Sox uniformed personnel, alumni and front office staff participated in the 21st Annual Boston Red Sox Children’s Hospital Celebrity Classic golf tournament held at The Forest Country Club in South Fort Myers. All proceeds helped fund an expansion of the Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida, providing extensive medical subspecialty treatments and state-of-the-art lifesaving care for the children of Southwest Florida.
Saturday, Feb. 22 – Red Sox Spring Training Open House at JetBlue Park
The Red Sox hosted its annual Spring Training Open House on Saturday, Feb. 22 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at JetBlue Park. The family-friendly event gave fans an opportunity to walk freely around JetBlue Park while enjoying inflatables, games, arts and crafts, a petting zoo, farmer’s market with more than 30 vendors, discounted concessions, pictures with the World Series trophies and player autographs and more. A bloodmobile was also onsite for anyone who was able to donate and wanted to help support Florida’s Blood Center. Before the open house, the public was invited to watch that morning’s workouts beginning at 9 a.m. The event was open to the public and free of charge, including complimentary parking.
Monday, Feb. 24 – Ninth Annual Evening with the Red Sox
For the ninth consecutive year, the Red Sox hosted the Evening with the Red Sox to at JetBlue Park from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Benefiting the Boys & Girls Clubs of Lee County, the evening included an opportunity for autographs with Red Sox players, live and silent auctions featuring Red Sox memorabilia, regular season game packages, vacation packages and local golf and restaurant experiences. Red Sox Manager and American League Manager of the Year runner-up John Farrell served as the evening’s guest speaker.
Tuesday, Feb. 25 – Day of Community Service
On Tuesday, Feb. 25 from 3 to 5 p.m., members of the Red Sox uniformed personnel and front office staff performed community service at Child Care of Southwest Florida. Volunteers were involved in a variety of activities including playing t-ball with children and planting, trimming and general clean up of a butterfly garden.
Wednesday, Feb. 26 – Day of Community Service
On Wednesday, Feb. 26, members of the Red Sox uniformed personnel and front office staff performed community service for two nonprofit programs in Southwest Florida including Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida’s Clean Sweep Donation Drive at JetBlue Park at 7 a.m. and CCMI’s Backpack Program at Treeline Elementary at 3 p.m. Volunteers were involved in a variety of activities including helping collect donations at JetBlue Park, filling backpacks with nonperishable food items for local elementary students who otherwise might go without a meal during the weekend, and playing ball with students of Goodwill’s L.I.F.E. Academy.
The Red Sox launched the 2014 Grapefruit League schedule at home on Friday, Feb. 28 at 1:05 p.m. against the Minnesota Twins. The Twins hosted the Red Sox at Hammond Stadium the following night, the second of six contests between the cross-town foes.
All 2014 day games at JetBlue Park are scheduled to begin at 1:05 p.m., and all night games are scheduled at 7:05 p.m.
On Monday, March 17 at 1:05 p.m., the St. Louis Cardinals will visit JetBlue Park for a St. Patrick’s Day rematch of the 2013 World Series participants.
All workouts are open to the public free of charge.