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Football fundraiser draws huge crowd

It was one of those nights where if you happen to be one of the ones who isn't really into a certain subject or sport (football), this was one of those occasions that could really make you change your mind. The St.

It was one of those nights where if you happen to be one of the ones who isn't really into a certain subject or sport (football), this was one of those occasions that could really make you change your mind.

The St. Mary's Ukrainian Cultural Centre was the site of the Annual Football Night in Saskatchewan minor football league fundraiser. The now-annual event has the sole purpose of raising money in order to help develop the City's youngest football players.There was a lot of 'green' on hand that night, so much that it felt like being on the actual football field when the Riders play.

The only time you will ever find a larger "Sea of Green" is if you were to make the two-hour trek to Taylor Field, Regina, Saskatchewan.

There were Roughrider jerseys everywhere you look and not a single touchdown, or point for that matter on the scoreboard.

When's the last time that could ever be said?

The last time I saw so many people in the same spot was during the Yorkton/LaRonge series during the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League championship series.

But this was definitely the biggest fundraiser/banquet that Yorkton has seen in awhile. With a pair of projector screens on either side of the stage, a ton of guest speakers, it seemed more like a meeting of the United Nations rather than a football get-together.Decorating the stage was a large, lit-up team logo that looked even better when the lights faded during a five-minute slide show. There were people everywhere and the food was pretty good too.

If there was to be some kind of 'point' or touchdown or something scored, it might go to the tons of youngsters all over Yorkton and area who are going to benefit from a night like this one.

In the evening's live auction, someone bid about $900 for a Jordan Matechuk Hamilton Ti-Cat baby-sized jersey.

This was one of those nights where everyone was there. The list goes on and on. Usually when putting together one of my literary master pieces (lol), I try to include the names of as many participants as I possible can. Supposedly people like seeing their names in the paper too.

The guest list on this night, a slide-show presentation, a live auction and a good several hundred people spending their Saturday evening celebrating the sport of football and you can ask any one of the handful of speakers that on first glance this night was an amazing success.

Troy Westwood who may or may not have become famous after having had some comments made taken slightly out of context did a really good job and was fun to listen to.

He had said some time ago that Regina residents were "banjo-picking inbreds."

He went on to explain to all in attendance that the comments were made more as a result of having his mother's side of the family being from Regina and that they used to poke fun at each other all the time.

During his stand at the podium, Westwood repeatedly praised the individuals who've helped shape the minor football system here in Yorkton.

He told the paper afterwards that had it not been for football when he was between ages 5-7, he likely would not have eventually went on to become one of the most successful place kickers in Winnipeg Blue Bombers history.

The evening also marked an end to the Football Week in the Parkland promotion which as previously reported was designated back in the winter as a week in which residents of the City of Yorkton basically had one full week to promote not only football but the pride shown for the province's lone professional football team the Saskatchewan Roughriders. Among the guests at St. Mary's that night was Sheri Trapp, a media/communication co-ordinator with the CFL club helped out with lining up a handful of current Canadian Football League players including the 'Riders' Weston Dressler.

Also, my thanks goes out to Sheri for helping to round up eight football players for a group photograph as the night came to an end.

Also appearing that night included native of Yorkton and current Hamilton Tiger-Cats' Matechuk and third-round selection in this year's CFL Entry Draft Eddie Steele out of the University of Manitoba.

Also helping out with not only the evening festivities but the day-long celebrations that went on the day of the banquet was Brittany Theis, a former Yorkton Regional High School and Roughrider cheerleader.

She spent part of that day hosting what's turned out to be her own clinic at MC Knoll, a several-hour session that's dedicated to promoting cheerleading within the school's youngest students. The CFL team's cheer squad also made a trip around Yorkton to visit some of the decorations throughout the city.

If there's anything you'd like to see covered by Game 7, please forward your suggestions to the Yorkton This Week sportsdesk by phone, fax or email.

All ideas are welcome and can be submitted by calling (306) 782-2465 X-114, or by fax to: (306) 786-1898.