Harford Family House held its 9th Annual Home Runs for the Homeless event sponsored by Harford Mutual Insurance. This year’s event raised over $31,000 which is the largest one day tally in history! The weather was perfect and the staff, teams and volunteers were extremely upbeat! When it was all over, the teams enjoyed a “ballpark style” dinner at the Ironbird’s Crab Shack. Robin Tomechko, CEO at Harford Family House said, “This was our best event ever! I am extremely pleased with how the community came together with 22 teams participating, and over $31,000 net raised to help Harford County’s homeless families with children.”
There were many highlights during the day and several firsts. First, the event had their first female-only team sponsored by Carrie Schuster and Innovative Insurance. Sponsor Carrie Schuster has been a mainstay participant and won several Georgia Peach Awards in prior years. This year’s Georgia Peach Award, went to another long-time participant, Donna Stein of lead sponsor Harford Mutual Insurance with a score of 180 points. Her determination and practice leading up to the event helped her win the award that is presented to the female in the event ending the day with the highest point total.
In a day that was filled with controversy, none stood out more than the neck-to-neck races for the overall point totals. Our Corporate Award, given to the team where all 4 players work at the same company, went down to the wire and ended in a tie between Burris and the Rite Aid Day Shift. These teams tied with 930 points. Burris Logistics team captain Tim Peifley suggested meeting the next day to settle the event but these two perennial powerhouses will have to wait until next year to find out who the top dog is!
More controversy followed with the overall Event Championship. A close race that saw Digital Innovation with 2,035 points and 5 HRs and top Team Alaimo , 2,025 points and 8 HRs, in quite a fireworks display. Long-time batter BJ Alaimo crossed over into team ownership and proved he was a very capable manager. But in the end, John Kutcher’s team, last year’s winner, again prevailed as his Digital Innovation team loaded with Johns Hopkins Blue Jays stars posted the day’s highest scores.
The Officer’s Cup held no surprise as The Harford County Deputy Sheriffs Union prevailed with 1,840 points over The Bel Air Police Department with 925 points and The Aberdeen Police Department with 1,600 points. The Harford County Deputy Sheriffs Union was led by All Star Chris Tolliver who put on his annual show with 3 home runs and 685 points, enough to earn him the Mark Logsdon Award named after his former teammate. A close second was Will Reiber with 595 points representing the Aberdeen Police.
The Golden Arm Award came down to the wire but was taken by long-time participant Tim Funk with 24 points! In this competition, one fires as many balls as possible at a target to see how many points they can accumulate in 20 seconds. Tim has always supported the cause with a batting team and it was nice to see him earn a trophy after all his years of participation.
The final award is given to the individual with the highest overall point total in the event. This year, the Silver Slugger Award went to Randy Bednar, Jr. with 770 points and 4 home runs. Randy played center field and pitched on three-time National Championship Arena STARZ teams, just finished a stellar career at Landon High School in Bethesda, was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the June amateur draft, and is representing the University of Maryland Terrapins next year at College Park. Randy blasted three balls entirely over the warehouse in left field in an unbelievable display of power, a warm-up for what he will accomplish as a Terp and truly appreciate him taking the time to help our cause.
Harford Family House thanks the sponsors, teams, volunteers as well as Claire Ranney and her Ripken Baseball staff for another successful event. Thanks also to the Mayor of Aberdeen, Patrick McGrady, for throwing out the first pitch, Allison Redman, for her beautiful rendition of our National Anthem and the Freestate Academy Cadets for their hard work throughout the entire event. But this year one volunteer stood out. Tim Langhauser went out of his way to create the “Golden Ball” sponsorships. For $100, sponsors supported the last ball hit by contestants, and that ball was worth DOUBLE POINTS! Tim’s contribution enabled us to raise more money and was the real reason we posted our biggest year ever. Next year will be the events 10th anniversary and spots will fill up fast.
For more information about Harford Family House, their events or to get involved with Home Runs for the Homeless, call 410-273-6700 or visit www.harfordfamilyhouse.org
About Harford Family House (www.harfordfamilyhouse.org)
Harford Family House is the largest provider of transitional housing for homeless families with children in Harford County. Other programs include HUD Supportive Housing for homeless families where one family member has a disability, Rapid Rehousing, and Ready by 21, a program to support unaccompanied young adults ages 18-21 who are involved with the foster care system. Clients are provided with a fully furnished apartment or house and receive case management services and referrals to partner agencies to move them from homelessness and despair to hope and independence.