April 5, 2017
Charlottesville, Va. – Virginia’s annual Shootout for Cancer fundraising event is scheduled for Saturday, April 8. The kid-friendly event will be held at KlÃƒÆ’Ã†’Â¶ckner Stadium from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Proceeds from the event benefit UVA Health Systems pediatric cancer research. Admission to the event is free.
The carnival-like activity enables kids to interact with and compete against UVA student-athletes, providing a day of fun for a great cause. The event also features inflatable games, face-painters and balloon artists.
The history of the event dates back to the early 1990s when Curt Onalfo, then a Cavalier soccer player, was diagnosed with cancer. He recovered and stayed in soccer where he is now the head coach for the MLS’ LA Galaxy.
Onalfo’s illness inspired teammate Tom Henske to take action to help his friend and other cancer patients. From Henske’s selfless commitment to those afflicted with the disease emerged an event to raise money for pediatric cancer treatment and research.
Following a soccer theme, Shoot Out for Cancer was born in 1993. Henske bequeathed the concept to UVA’s Student Athlete Mentors (SAMs), which has continued to organize and run the annual event with Henske’s original intent in mind–to help children and youth battling cancer. Together with the Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC) the SAMs are a leadership group composed of student-athletes from all 25 varsity sports. At UVA the SAAC focuses of organizational aspects of student-athlete life, while the SAMs focus on good decision-making and community service.