Sometimes getting in the game is hard, especially for those living close to the poverty line. Hockey gear, soccer gear, baseball gear and registration fees, are costs that sometimes add up to a young person not being able to participate. Fortunately, there’s the good folks behind the Athletics for Kids organization (A4K). They’re out to even the score by supplying financially disadvantaged youth with access to community amateur sports programs. Last week, the 9th Annual A4K Boxing Dinner Gala helped raise funds via an elegant black-tie night out at West Vancouver’s Hollyburn Country Club. Round one was a martini reception, complete with silent auction items galore. Then it was time for a beautiful three-course dinner, a live auction, and then the main event – five rounds of Olympic rules sanctioned boxing. Congrats to all involved.
01 – Put up your dukes, let’s get down to it. Boxing buddies Bob Leblevec, left, Dave Bird, Todd Wall and Brad Wolgs play it up for the camera during the before dinner reception.
02 – Time for a boys night out as Andre Boileau and his dad, Dr. Marc Boileau, get ready to watch some Olympic class boxing.
03 – A4K President Chris Obst welcomes guests, like former North Vancouver fire chief Tommy Cummings, to the best night of boxing on the North Shore.
04 – QM/FM radio personality and former A4K director Tara McGuire, left, dines with producer Brad Challoner and Crystal Lidemark.
05 – And in this corner, helping with the MC duties for the night, is QM/FM morning show host Mike Shaeffer.
06 – They look just as comfortable in the ring as they do on the ice. Canucks anthem singer (and lucky charm) Mark Donnelly, left, and Canucks hockey hero Dave Babych get ready to raise money for the kids.
07 – He’s the man that helped start it all. Loads of hugs and kisses to A4K co-founder Craig Knapton, seen here with wife Becky, for pouring his heart and soul into helping all the kids.
08 – Leaving everyone shaken and stirred are the beautiful serving duo of Hannah Locke, left, and Nelly Kutle who ensure that the martini glasses are always full.
09 – Hit me with your best shot. Former Super Welterweight Champion of the World, boxing coach and A4K spokesperson Manny Sobral, left, kids with friend Ivano DeCotiis as the boxing matches get underway.
By Catherine Barr – April 1, 2011
Also as seen in print in the North Shore Outlook Newspaper on April 7, 2011