How a Toronto Blue Jays Benefit Celebrated Canada's 150th Anniversary

Jays Care Foundation’s ninth annual Curve Ball celebrated Canada’s 150th anniversary with decor elements that weaved in art made by kids in the program.

By Ian Zelaya June 26, 2017, 7:00 AM EDT

The Curve Ball, which took place on the field at Rogers Centre May 25, featured a design that incorporated Canadian symbols and the Toronto Blue Jays colors of royal and navy blue, white, and red. 

Photo: Mauricio Jose Calero

Jays Care Foundation's Ninth Annual Curve Ball
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As 2017 marks the 150th anniversary of Canada’s Confederation, numerous events in Toronto and other Canadian cities are incorporating an all-Canadian theme—which is why the Rogers Centre recently was decked out with decor including loon centerpieces, Canadian flag mosaic walls, and a giant illuminated moose. 

The Jays Care Foundation—the Toronto Blue Jays’s organization that uses baseball to teach life skills to underserved youth—incorporated the theme of Canada 150 into its annual Curve Ball benefit gala on May 25. Candice & Alison designed the ninth annual event, which is the foundation's largest fund-raiser.

Jenny Le, manager of events for the Jays Care Foundation, says this year’s design concept was to take typical symbols and icons associated with Canada and give them an original spin. 

“When you think of Canada, you think of moose and beavers. We wanted to use that theme and incorporate fun and playful elements,” Le said. “Because we fall under the umbrella of the Toronto Blue Jays, we also wanted to incorporate their look and feel.”

Since the foundation’s main focus is helping kids through baseball, artwork from kids in the program was weaved into the event’s decor as well. “We incorporated the kids since we’re there to raise money for them,” Le said. Decor included photos of kids in the program that were made into a mosaic of the Canadian flag, decorated wooden centerpieces of moose and loons, and a mini art gallery in the stadium’s visitors dugout. 

As with previous years, funds were raised in a variety ways, including an auction, a raffle, and donation cards. Le said the foundation didn’t drastically change the Curve Ball’s fund-raising strategy this year, but that this was the organization's largest and most successful event yet. The gala raised more than $1.5 million with more than 1,300 guests in attendance, including the entire Blue Jays roster. 

Here’s a look at how Canadian symbols, the Blue Jays theme, and the artwork of Jays Care Foundation’s kids were woven into the Curve Ball’s decor. 

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