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Joliet Slammers host Morris Community Night

Published: Tuesday, June 17, 2014 9:20 p.m. CDT
(Michael DiNovo for Shaw Media)
Joliet Slammers batter Marquis Riley gets a single against the River City Rascals at Silver Cross Field Sunday in Joliet.

MORRIS – The entire community is invited to root for local baseball teams while helping raise money for Grundy County charities by attending Thursday’s Joliet Slammers Morris Community Night.

Fifty percent of all ticket sales from Thursday’s game will benefit the Grundy County Housing Authority and the Grundy-Three Rivers Habitat for Humanity.

Tickets are $10, and the Slammers will be facing the Normal Cornbelters. Parking for the event is free.

“Ticket sales have been really great so we expect to have a nice crowd from the community,” said Jennifer Olson of the GCHA, which is participating in the fundraiser for the first time this year.

The Slammers host several community nights throughout the summer aimed at supporting local charities and reaching out to surrounding communities.

Last year, Habitat for Humanity was able to raise close to $1,000 though the Slammers community night fundraiser, but board member Kevin Brown thinks the organization may surpass that number this year.

To increase ticket sales and spur more community involvement, the Slammers incorporated a police versus fire department ticket selling challenge for the first time.

The Morris Police Department and Morris Fire Protection & Ambulance District battled to sell the most tickets. The police outsold the firefighters, selling 170 tickets and earning the department a free 22-person suite with complimentary food, beverages and shuttle service provided by local companies.

“That was something new we tried, and I think it went over really well,” Slammers community relations director Ken Miller said.

Keeping things local, Morris Mayor Richard Kopczick and Morris resident Eyin Stanford will be throwing out the inaugural pitch. Stanford won the honor at the Habitat for Humanity Golf Outing and Silent Auction in May where throwing the first pitch was an item up for bid.

The Morris Community High School Redskins Poms team also will perform a routine before the game.

“We aim to have the community represented and involved as much as we can,” Miller said.

The Grundy County Chamber of Commerce and Industry will be hosting its business after hours at the stadium as well on Thursday. The networking event is open to all, but attendees will need to purchase a Slammers ticket if they want to attend the game.

Brown encouraged everyone to attend the event.

“It’s just something everybody enjoys and it helps us raise money,” he said. “It’s just a great event. Hopefully we get some nice weather.”

If you go

What: Joliet Slammers Morris Community Night

When: 7 p.m. Thursday, June 19

Where: Silver Cross Field, 1 Mayor Art Schultz Dr., Joliet

Cost: Tickets are $10 and include free on-site parking. Tickets are available at the game.

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