Jason Blaine and friends raise $100K for the community
The fifth annual Jason Blaine Night with the Stars Gala and Celebrity Charity Golf Classic raised an astounding $100,000 for local organizations and agencies. Pictured here (from left) are Tami Sylvestre, Angela Schutt, Matt Bradley, Marianne Minns, Rhodina Turner, Jason Blaine, Cathy Warren, Tracy McBride, Jamie Bramburger and Marie Mask.
For a homecoming like no other, Jason Blaine hit a hole-in-one with his two-day benefit that raised a record-setting $100,000.
It was several years ago that Canadian country music star and Pembroke native Jason Blaine sat down with his good friend Jamie Bramburger to share his vision of setting up his own charity in his hometown.
“He contacted me over the Christmas holidays one year, asked me out for lunch, and he told me about his idea of organizing a concert and golf tournament to raise funds for the community,” said Bramburger. “At the time, my first thought was ‘this is going to be a lot of work’.”
A couple of years later, in 2014, that dream was realized as Bramburger and a team of other volunteers and sponsors helped Blaine to organize the first Jason Blaine Night with the Stars Gala and Celebrity Charity Golf Classic. That inaugural 2014 event raised more than $50,000 to support causes in Pembroke and surrounding area – including Algonquin College’s capital building campaign for the new Waterfront Campus. Each year thereafter, the event brought in more and more dollars with a whopping $90,000 at the 2017 event.
With more than $300,000 raised in the last four years, Blaine’s charitable efforts have supported Algonquin College, the Pembroke and Area Boys’ and Girls’ Club, the Pembroke-Petawawa Community Foundation, the Pembroke Regional Hospital’s MRI campaign, the Pembroke Legion and many other organizations throughout his hometown.
“It's become a magnificent event and has really raised a ton of money for Pembroke and area,” said Bramburger. “It's a locally-based charity that gives back to local projects and causes and it’s so inspirational to see that Jason’s idea has become this amazing reality. He’s lived in Nashville for more than a decade and yet he's never forgotten his roots and he comes back every year and gives back through this wonderful event.”
With 2018 marking the fifth annual Jason Blaine Night with the Stars Gala and Celebrity Charity Golf Classic, the event honoured that milestone in epic fashion as it went above and beyond all expectations.
The star-studded benefit concert included performances from Blaine along with fellow country hitmakers JoJo Mason, River Town Saints and Petric. The following day, Blaine and his friends went out swinging at their Charity Golf Classic where they sunk the final fundraising dollars to raise an astounding $100,000.
“Amazing, this is absolutely amazing!” exclaimed Blaine, after Jamie Bramburger had revealed to cheque amid loud cheers and applause. “It was more than five years ago that I had a dream to set up my own fundraising event to help give back to my hometown. Right from day one, when I shared my vision with Jamie (Bramburger), I said I could bring the music but I had no idea how to put on an event of this size. So it’s really thanks to this great community and everyone involved that this has been such a huge success over the last five years. Over $400,000 in five years is a big number and it’s absolutely incredible.”
After announcing the record amount, Blaine continued to graciously thank the support of key sponsors, his fellow musician friends and his volunteer committee who tirelessly helped him to co-ordinate the annual event and make it a huge success.
“To all of our sponsors, thank you so much for always coming through for us – five years in a row! Thank you to River Town Saints, JoJo Mason, Petric and the Western Swing Authority Band for bringing their talents to support this event. As well, I’m really proud of my volunteer committee as they all worked really hard to make this happen. I’m just so very grateful and humbled by the contributions of everyone who made this possible,” he said. “This is a labour of love and I hope we can keep this going for many more years!”
This year’s proceeds will help to fund Jason Blaine’s endowment for Algonquin College’s students in need of financial aid, the Pembroke and Area Boys and Girls Club, the Caring for All Community Fund and other organizations throughout the area.