WASHINGTON - AUGUST 09: World- renowned magician David Blaine (L) talks with Washington Nationals Third Baseman, Ryan Zimmerman at "A Night At The Park" to benefit the ziMS Foundation hosted by Ryan Zimmerman at Nationals Park on August 9, 2010 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for ziMS Foundation)
When Ryan Zimmerman negotiated his contract with the Nationals, amidst the usual athlete contract jargon was a specific request.
He wanted free run of the ballpark for one night.
Zimmerman insisted that he have the use of the stadium once a year to host an event for the ziMS Foundation, his non-profit benefiting Multiple Sclerosis.
On Thursday, Zimmerman will host the second annual “A Night At The Park.” Last year’s debut event raised approximately $200,000.
The cause is something very personal to Zimmerman. His mom, Cheryl, was diagnosed with MS in 1995.
“A lot of athletes have foundations, and we’re very fortunate to be able to do what we do,” Zimmerman told the Washington Times. “Obviously to have your mother grow up with something like that … it just seems right to organize things and be able to give back.”
In addition to the Foundation’s regular contributions to the cause, the ziMS Foundations will use Thursday’s event to present a check for $25,000 to dreamMakerS, a non-profit organization serving children of parents with Multiple Sclerosis. The funds will support social, educational, and assistive
programs offered by dreamMakerS to families living with MS.
Thursday’s event will feature an appearance by Rodney Atkins, a David Blaine performance for VIP ticket holder, and a silent auction to raise money for the foundation. Tickets for the event can be purchased here.
There is a discount for groups of at least 10, so pile your friends in the car and head to Nats Park for a good cause.