A few dozen poker enthusiasts participated in last Saturday’s Mangat poker tournament held at the legion in Aldergrove. It is an annual fundraiser for cancer. (Special to The Star)

Mangats hitting homer for cancer

Aldergrove family introduces new, two-day charity softball tourney this weekend

Only seven days after a poker tournament in Aldergrove generated a few thousand for cancer, a local family is heading up a baseball tourney intended to add to that fundraising pot.

Poker and baseball are two recreational pastimes that, thanks to Aldergrove resident Jodi Mangat, have a charitable spin – specifically, the funds are intended to help kids and help fight cancer.

Last weekend, Mangat’s family held its annual poker event at the Aldergrove legion.

“Due to COVID-19 there were restrictions on the number of players and spectators allowed in but we were still able to raise over $3,500. We would like to thank all the players, volunteers, donors, and the community for once again allowing us to put on this event,” she said, adding thanks to the legion, as well, for donating the space.

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The origins of the poker night stem from the loss of her mother, Kaur Dhillon, who passed away in December 2014.

More recently, Mangat’s friend Amrik ‘Moti’ Basi passed away from the disease in January of this year.

“This is who I fundraise for,” Mangat said. “In memory of our loved ones. Our family will continue to help families affected by cancer.”

Now, the family is gearing up for an inaugural fundraising softball tournament, happening Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 28 and 29 at the Phillip Jackman Park.

“We have 12 teams signed up for two days of play and will have a barbecue, beer garden, kids entertainment and lots of other fun activities,” Mangat said.

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With an entry fee of $400 a team, she noted all proceeds from the weekend are being donated to the cause.

“Each year we do our best to fundraise on behalf of the BC Cancer Foundation because cancer in one way or another has affected us all,” she elaborated.

In the past five years, the Mangat family has raised more than $30,000. Most of that money, she noted, has gone towards BC Cancer, though nearly $6,000 has assisted families struggling in the midst of the disease – which will be the case this year. Two families have been earmarked to receive funds.

“We would not be able to fundraise and pull off these events without the unwavering support of our community and donors,” she said.

“Thank you Aldergrove and we look forward to seeing you all this weekend and remember, together we fight.”

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A few dozen poker enthusiasts participated in last Saturday’s Mangat poker tournament held at the legion in Aldergrove. It is an annual fundraiser for cancer. (Special to The Star)

A few dozen poker enthusiasts participated in last Saturday’s Mangat poker tournament held at the legion in Aldergrove. It is an annual fundraiser for cancer. (Special to The Star)