Chicago Cubs players, current and former, came together to support the nonprofit Wood Family Foundation's annual Woody's Winter Warm-Up Jan. 17 at Harry Caray's Tavern on Navy Pier.
Retired Cubs pitcher Kerry Wood and his wife, Sarah, welcomed more than 500 partygoers to this celebrity mixer that featured silent and live auctions and live entertainment. Media guest bartenders, who competed for tips for the foundation, included Ryan Chiaverini, Allison Rosati, Rob Johnson and Anna Davlantes. Sports stars included Mark Prior, Jeff Samardzija, Starlin Castro, Anthony Rizzo and James Russell.
The evening featured a live performance by Robert Randolph, renowned pedal steel guitarist, who played selections from his recent album "Lickety Split." The Lovehammers, a Chicago-based alternative-rock band, performed an acoustic set. Gov. Pat Quinn congratulated the Woods, and Sarah Wood acknowledged Gabriella Santoyo, the foundation's first scholarship recipient.
A silent auction of sports memorabilia included autographed jerseys, baseballs and bats as well as Kerry Wood's last-game items from when he retired. Signed specialty lots included Billy Williams and Castro jerseys, Ernie Banks and Rizzo bats and a 2013 Cubs team-autographed baseball.
Emcees Pete McMurray and Catie Keogh conducted the live auction that included a Chicago Blackhawks painting created by Artbeat Live artist Elliott From (sold for $3,700), a spring training package (sold for $4,500) and a spot on the celebrity team at Woody's Wiffle Ball Classic on Aug. 15 (sold for $3,250).
The event raised more than $100,000 to benefit the Wood Family Foundation, founded in 2011 to help improve the lives of Chicago kids by raising funds and awareness for children's charities.
Freelance writer Candace Jordan is involved with many local organizations, including some whose events she covers.
Click here to see photos from these events.
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