Celebrity Polo players come together to support Boys & Girls Clubs’ Great Futures Polo Day
Event raised over $215,000 to benefit the Neil S. Hirsch Boys & Girls Club of Wellington
WELLINGTON, FL – The 6th annual ‘Great Futures Celebrity Polo Charity Cup & Brunch’ benefiting the Neil S. Hirsch Family Boys & Girls Club of Wellington took place on Sunday, March 10 raising over $215,000 for Club programming. Co-chairmen were Marc and Melissa Ganzi as well as Olexa Celine.
For the sixth consecutive year, Grand Champions Polo Club was the host of the morning’s celebrity polo match featuring honorary event chairmen, Nacho Figueras, Polo’s international ambassador and the face of Ralph Lauren; America’s Most Wanted/The Hunt TV host and child advocate, John Walsh.
“It is always fun when you can play polo and do something for kids,” said Figueras.
“This is a great group of people coming together to help the Boys & Girls Club, the lifeline for many of these kids,” said Walsh, an avid polo player who competes throughout the world and plays in several charity events across the nation. “Clubs are changing children’s lives one child at a time. They do God’s work.”
Other polo pros and patrons who participated in the three-team, round robin tournament were Alejandro Novillo Astrada, Juan Bollini, Santos Bollini, Tom Coid, Joe DiMenna, Riley Ganzi, Dawn Jones, Inaki Laprida, Magoo Laprida, Pablo Mac Donough and Sarah Magness.
The Equuleus team featuring DiMenna, Coid, Inaki Laprida, and Magoo Laprida won the polo match. DiMenna from the Equuleus team was named Most Valuable Player and Sarah Magness’s Horse B12 was named best playing pony.
“Polo and charity go together,” said Neil Hirsch. “These polo players are more like my brothers. They come out here and do this for no personal financial gain. They do it for the children.”
“Neil Hirsch has set a great example for our polo community by giving back to those who need us most here in Wellington – our children,” said Melissa Ganzi. “The celebrity match is making an impact on the club members, their families and our community.”
The celebrity match was followed by a brunch at the International Polo Club Mallet Grille. Nearly two hundred guests had an opportunity to participate in a dynamic live auction that featured Sheriff for a Day, a race car experience with professional driver Kurt Busch, Polo in Aspen, a Cruise on the Fly, In Pursuit with John Walsh Experience, Stay & Play at Smuggler’s Cove Inn, Colonnade Shopping Spree and Nacho Figueras autographed game-worn jerseys.
Wellington Youth of the Year Janayah Strachan shared with the crowd her Club experience in an impressively eloquent speech. After brunch, guests enjoyed the 3 p.m. polo match.
Sponsors are an integral part of this celebration and some of this year’s sponsors included Sebilion Farm and Olexa Celine, Grand Champions Polo Club, Joe and Diana DiMenna and the Equuleus Polo Team, Neil S. Hirsch and Dr. Laura DeLuca, Evelyn V. McPherson Foundation, Linsey and Jeff Desich, Digital Bridge Holdings, LLC., Marc and Melissa Ganzi, BMO Wealth Management, Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital at Memorial, Steven N. Rappaport and Judith A. Garson, PNC Wealth Management, Waste Management, Zenni Foundation, Starbucks in Wellington Green Mall, PoloGear, Laz Parking, and Tito’s Handmade Vodka.
Proceeds from the day’s events support the Neil S. Hirsch Family Boys & Girls Club of Wellington, one of 13 Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County. The Club provides services during non-school hours, as well as summer camp opportunities, to nearly 1,000 boys and girls from ages 6 to 18. The Club emphasizes educational, vocational, social, recreational, health, leadership, and character building skills in a positive and safe atmosphere. Through quality programs, the Club experience provides children with the guidance they need to make a healthy transition from childhood to young adulthood.
For more information about this event or about the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County, please call (561) 683-3287 or visit www.bgcpbc.org.
About the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County
Founded in 1971, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County is a not-for profit youth development organization dedicated to promoting the educational, vocational, health leadership and character of boys and girls in a safe, nurturing environment. The Clubs provide more than a safe, fun and constructive alternative to being home alone – they offer a variety of award-winning developmental programs to help youth build skills, self-esteem and values during critical periods of growth. The thirteen Boys & Girls Clubs throughout Palm Beach County serve more than 9,300 children ages 6-18. For more information, please visit www.bgcpbc.org or call 561-683-3287.