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Edward M. Eveld, reporting for the Kansas City Star covered the annual Big Slick Celebrity Weekend, which benefits Children’s Mercy Hospital. Founded in 1880, The Star counts among its famous employees Ernest Hemingway, Harry S. Truman, Theodore Roosevelt and Walt Disney.

Big Slick Celebrity Weekend a big benefit for children’s hospital

big-slick, selena gomez, paul rudd, jason sudeikis, eric stonestreet, rob riggle, david koechner, mercy children's hospital

By Edward M. Eveld | The Kansas City Star | 6/19/15

It’s a bunch of fun — celebrities everywhere, softball at the K, bowling and bocce, an auction party — but Big Slick Celebrity Weekend all starts at Children’s Mercy Hospital.

Before the Big Slick fundraising events, Jason Sudeikis, Paul Rudd, Rob Riggle, Eric Stonestreet and David Koechner gathered Friday morning to chat and play games with some of the hospital’s patients.

“He’s smokin’ me!” said Rob Riggle about his young Connect Four opponent, who grinned ear to ear.

Michael Artman, pediatrician-in-chief at Children’s Mercy, welcomed the five celebrity hosts to the hospital Friday and noted that the two-day fundraiser, now in its sixth year, couldn’t officially begin until he said these words:

“The boys are back in town!”

That’s good news for the hospital, which Artman said has received $2.25 million from Big Slick in the past five years.

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Big Slick Celebrity Weekend Fun for Charity

What started out as a celebrity poker tournament and party in 2010, has now grown into a celebrity-packed weekend boasting softball, bowling, bocce, and an auction party to raise money for Children’s Mercy Hospital. Big Slick was founded by comedic actor, Rob Riggle, along with two of his former Shawnee Mission West High School classmates and fellow comedians, Paul Rudd and Jason Sudeikis.

In the past five years, the hospital has received $2.25 million from Big Slick, which started out with the goal to raise $50,000.  Since then, Riggle and his friends have invited their celebrity friends to play ball and attend fundraising events. This year’s list included James Van Der Beek, George Wendt, Aisha Tyler, Chris Daughtry, Hilarie Burton, Joe Lo Truglio, Johnny Knoxville, Josh Hopkins and Neil Flynn.  Other big-name celebrities like David Koechner (Anchorman, The Office), Eric Stonestreet (Modern Family) and pop superstar, Selena Gomez, also lent their support to raise funds for the hospital’s cancer center.

Strengthen Your Fundraising with Social Media

The participants of the Big Slick Celebrity Weekend took to social media to share their personal experiences at the event, helping to spread word about Children’s Mercy Hospital to a very wide audience. Selena Gomez’s fans reposted, retweeted her photos and videos all taken on her mobile phone further spreading the Big Slicks mission.

big slick, selena gomez, paull rud

The good news for nonprofits is that celebrities are not the only ones posting on Facebook and Instagram, tweeting on Twitter and pinning on Pinterest. Tap into the extraordinary power of social to maximize all of your efforts. By calling on your existing supporters to use their mobile phones to take photos representing your cause which they can share on social media before, during and after your next event, you’ll be able to make an impact for your org, like Big Slick did.

Facebook posts with photos see the most engagement, accounting for 87% of total interactions and Tweets with images receive 18% more clicks, 89% more favorites and 150% more retweets.

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