The Curve's Eastern League All-Star Game festivities in July, featuring a celebrity softball game between the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team and former Curve players, will raise money to provide a multi-purpose, off-road wheelchair for one Blair County veteran.
The Mirror and AMBUCS Altoona are joining with the franchise to sponsor the Curve, PA Heroes Softball Game July 15. Money will be raised through a jersey auction that night to pay for an Action Trackchair that will be presented to a local veteran. The wheelchair, which navigates off road and through rugged terrain, costs upwards of $10,000.
"Our mission is to create independence and mobility for those with disabilities," AMBUCS Altoona representative Rachael Lenhart said. "For those men and women who have sacrificed the ultimate sacrifice to go out and serve our country and lose a limb and not be able to do the things that most of us take for granted, for us to be able to help one of those men or women means so much to us."
Keeping with the veterans theme, the Curve will dedicate one seat at Peoples Natural Gas Field to remain forever unoccupied and show support for POW/MIA soldiers. The seat, in section 112 behind home plate, will be painted black, and there will be a plaque near the seat to signify its importance.
"We are proud to honor those who have served our country," Curve general manager Rob Egan said. "The dedication of the POW/MIA seat will serve as a reminder of those who did not come home and remain unaccounted for."
The Curve also announced that former players Kory DeHaan and Mike Connolly will take part in the game July 15. Others previously announced as participants include Adam Hyzdu, Jack Wilson, Tike Redman, Mike Johnston and Chris Snusz.
The EL All-Star Game will be held July 16 at PNG Field. Tickets are still available, and the showcase event is expected to draw one of the biggest crowds in franchise history.
Egan said it is possible the game could draw 10,000 fans, a milestone first reached when the Pirates visited last year for an exhibition game.