VANCOUVER Individuals from British Columbia’s mining community, their companies and others associated with the industry are indeed a generous bunchespecially when it comes to the British Columbia Children’s Hospital (BCCH).
That fact became overwhelmingly obvious at the recent TECK COMINCO-hosted Mining for Miracles Gold Rush Fair and Celebrity Pie Throw held at the end of May on a sunny day in Vancouver. This annual public event raised an amazing $354,000, due in a major way to the "taking-a-pie-for-the-kids" portion of the festivities.
The Gold Rush Fair and pie throw was held at the plaza between the downtown Vancouver and Terminal City clubs. Global TV’s Wayne Cox was again master of ceremonies introducing the crowd to entertainer Klondike Kate and her Gypsy Girls, and explaining the line up of activities that included gold panning demonstrations by Yukon Dan, the "commodities" roulette wheel manned by CANACCORD’s Graeme Currie, "frontier" photos from Gastown Photos, food vendors Pita Express and The Flying Wedge (by donation) and the $25,000 diamond raffle drawn after the pie throw (diamond donated by BHP BILLITON DIAMONDS, gold by Teck Cominco and design work donated by internationally-acclaimed local designer, Andrew Costen of Costen Catbalue).
The celebrity "pie-ees" and "pie-ers" numbered 11 apiece and were an impressive cross-section of Vancouver’s senior mining executives and high-profile business leaders (some from out-of-province). Those "taking" a pie included the Hon. Pat Bell, Minister of State for Mining; Francis Parkinson, general manager of the Fairmont Waterfront Hotel; Gary Livingstone, recent past-president and CEO of the Mining Association of BC; Donald McInnes, founder, president and director of Western Keltic Mines Inc. and Blackstone Ventures Inc.; Jim Popowich, president & CEO of Elk Valley Coal; and Teck Cominco’s Jon Collins, VP exploration business development (and Mining for Miracles Chair 2004/05); Karen Dunfee, corporate secretary; and deputy chairman & CEO David Thompson. David Thompson’s pie raised an unbelievable $205,000!
Two BCCH surgeons, Drs. Geoffrey Blair and Andrew MacNeily, also volunteered their time and good humour by receiving pies from former patients.
Through the Mining for Miracles campaign, B.C.’s mining industry has had a proud 17-year-association with BC Children’s Hospital, raising nearly $7 million. This year’s grand total from the industry amounted to an unprecedented $705,000!
For those still wishing to make a donation to the Mining for Miracles campaign, please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org (tax receipts will be issued by BCCH). Organizers have already reserved a date for next year’s event, Thursday, May 12, 2005, so plan on being a part of the fun.
(This item was contributed by Kea Barker of Teck Cominco in Vancouver. She is an enthusiastic supporter of the BCCH.)