B-P’s Patriot Pink Out wins $2,500 grant

BROADALBIN – The Broadalbin-Perth boys soccer program’s Patriot Pink Out has won a $2,500 grant from the MVP Project Go Contest after recently being named a top-10 finalist.

About 100 nonprofit organizations and projects with healthy benefits in New York and Vermont entered the contest. The top-10 finalists were chosen based on online voting from Nov. 26, 2013, to Jan. 27, 2014.

Each of the top-10 finalists received $2,500, and the overall winner, the Schenectady Jewish Community Center’s Natural Outdoor Play Space, also gets a fundraising event featuring soccer star Abby Wambach.

Broadalbin-Perth boys varsity soccer coach Brian Henry said in a news release that he was thrilled to get the call from MVP that the Patriot Pink Out had won the grant money.

“We haven’t decided how the money is going to be spent just yet, but once my committee gets together this spring, we will brainstorm ideas on how get the most out of the funds,” Henry said in the release.

The Patriot Pink Out started in 2009, when the boys’ soccer team dedicated its season to high school Principal Robin Blowers, who was battling breast cancer at the time. The coach’s mother, Nancy Henry, and soccer mom, Donna Dumais, also were honored during that season for their courageous fights against breast cancer. All three women are now in remission.

Over the past five years, the Patriot Pink Out soccer match has continued to grow into a huge community event. The junior varsity and varsity teams wear pink uniforms and play with pink soccer balls for the special game each October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Not only does the event to help increase awareness about cancer and pay tribute to community members that have battled or are battling cancer, it raises thousands of dollars for the American Cancer Society.

Since its inception, the Patriot Pink Out has raised about $15,000 for cancer research.

“We never imagined our initial efforts would transform into one of the biggest fundraising events in the district,” coach Henry said in the release, adding the coaching staff has used the Pink Out as a forum to teach players to put their lives in perspective. “There are much bigger things out there than just soccer. We remind our players of the struggles that people like Mrs. Blowers and my mom have gone through and use that as inspiration to continue our work to make the Patriot Pink Out more successful each year.”