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Chicago Cubs Hit Hub 51 in Support of The Ryan & Jenny Dempster Family Foundation


Sports reporter, sarcastic smartass, music lover, funny gal.

Sunday night after a long weekend spent at the Cubs Convention, I joined several hundred people at Hub 51 for the launch of The Ryan & Jenny Dempster Family Foundation. The Cubs pitcher and his wife started the charity to raise awareness of and support children with the 22q11.2 deletion (DiGeorge Syndrome), a genetic disorder their 10-month-old daughter Riley suffers from.

Front office bigwigs like Jim Hendry and Crane Kenny, injured Blackhawks forward Adam Burish, a handful of Chicago media and even former Bachelorette star Jillian Harris gathered at the event, which featured delicious Hub 51 appetizers, an open bar, and silent and live auctions. Governor Pat Quinn even made an appearance, joining Dempster and his wife on stage to announce that January 17th would officially be named as the Ryan & Jenny Dempster Family Foundation Day.

And of course, Dempster's teammates showed up en masse to support him. Derrek Lee, Randy Wells, Micah Hoffpauir, Koyie Hill, Jeff Samardzija, Jeff Samardzija's hair, Sean Marshall, Ryan Theriot, Ted Lilly, Tom Gorzelanny, John Grabow and Cubs legend Ernie Banks were all in attendance, despite a competing charity launch by Carlos Zambrano just a few blocks away at Fogo de Chao.

One wall of the restaurant was packed with silent auction items like signed jerseys, photographs and merchandise, Oprah and SNL tickets, spa days and more. Wells just missed taking home an autographed Eddie Vedder ukelele, while Grabow and Gorzelanny battled back and forth for a signed Michael Jordan jersey.

The live auction items were even more tempting, involving once in a lifetime opportunities like a private hockey lesson with Jonathan Toews at the United Center, the chance to throw out the first pitch at a Cubs game and skating at Wrigley with Dempster and Chris Chelios. But the big winner of the night was a gentleman who bid $26,000 for a private jet for eight people to go to New York to see the Cubs play the Mets, including tickets for two games, hotel and dinners.

I urge you to consider giving whatever you can to support the foundation. Dempster is truly one of the good guys and he's deserving of and thankful for his ability to help a cause so close to home. Get more info here:

Big thanks to super-photographer and all-around good guy Will Byington for his fantastic photos! (His are the spiffy-looking professional ones...) Check out more of his work here and don't miss out on his must-have book for Cubs fans, "We Are Cubs Fans."



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Gunzaan said:


Wow, that looked like a lot of fun and for a good cause! That necklace you are wearing is pretty tight!

SarahSpain said:


Yeah, they did a great job with the event. And the necklace was a gift from a special someone... : )

plamorte said:


I would have bid a nut (probably the left one) for an autographed Eddie Vedder ukelele, that's so awesome. Glad to see Demp had a good turn out for a good cause.

SarahSpain said:


It's always the left one, isn't it...

bigwhisker said:


That is one lucky "special someone"! Great tastes in more than just necklaces... :D

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