The 20th annual Cody Classic last month continued the softball tournament’s two-decade legacy of bringing people together to raise funds for families dealing with childhood cancer.
“It went great,” organizer Wes Swain said. “They always do.
“We believe if you do nothing, you raise nothing, so if you do something, it’s always going to be positive.”
Swain wasn’t sure of how much the tournament raised, but he was confident it would be along the lines of the usual totals, between $35,000 and $40,000.
“It’s not about how much, it’s about the effort,” he said. “It’s about awareness, how it effects people and why they’re there.”
Teams were asking about next year’s tournament before this year’s was even finished.
“They’re all on board,” he said. “They were asking if we are going to do 20 teams again next year.”
The tournament has traditionally included 16 teams, but Swain raised the number for the 20th year. He might be stuck there now.
“It’s hard to go back when there are so many people wanting to help,” he said.
Swain, whose son Cody is a cancer survivor and the namesake of the event, had one particularly profound moment during the tournament.
“My wife Jennifer and I were standing in a circle with four other families who had been through the same thing,” he said. “Some of them are done with it, some are going through the treatments, and some didn’t win the battle. It’s a real emotional time, no doubt.”
The Cody Classic has generated hundreds of thousands of dollars to help families with children battling cancer, but that’s not all it does.
“Money is one thing,” Swain said. “To have somewhere people understand you and let you know you’re not alone, that’s even better. That’s why we live in one of the best places in the world.”
The 20th annual tournament was followed on Sept. 29 by a gala event at the Glen Harper Curling Centre to give back to the sponsors and others who have supported the cause over the years.