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The El Balderinos and Center of the Universe Brewing Company are raising money for Childhood Cancer Research by hosting a St. Patrick’s Day Bash to benefit St. Baldrick’s.

For the 4th year in a row, The El Balderinos are going all out to raise money for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation. Each year, this St. Baldrick’s team – named after a Center of the Universe Brewing Company beer (El Duderino) – partners with COTU to raise money for the annual shave event at the Church Hill Irish Festival.

The festival has welcomed St. Baldrick’s ambassadors and participants for the past 13 years to host a very powerful show of solidarity for cancer patients: a community head shaving. While the shaving is just one part of the big Irish Festival, it means a great deal to those who participate.

The El Balderinos are just one of many teams that participate each year. They are made up of “COTU Satellites”, a group of like minded beer enthusiasts who use Center of the Universe Brewing as their hub.

The team started with just one Satellite: Bridgette Francine Kelly. Bridgette’s efforts began in 2014 when, as a first year “Shavee”, she stopped into the brewery to celebrate her inaugural shearing. The Satellites and COTU crew were there to congratulate her and were inspired by her dedication and passion. The team has grown every year since.

Last year the team raised $20,552 and were the second highest fundraisers at the festival. Their team leader Bridgette raised $10,347 and was awarded the medal as the highest individual fundraiser!

This year, their goal is to top that and be the top fundraiser as a team. There have been multiple friends within the Satellite community who have been affected by cancer. This cause is very near and dear to their hearts.

“This is the third year in a row, we, the El Balderinos, are dedicating our shave to one of our own. The first year, it was for Elaine (still battling), the second year, to our dear friend, Larry (R.I.P July of 2016), this year is for Michelle, an amazing MOM, person, friend, and Satellite.” – Bridgette Kelly

Susanne Barkhurst, a cancer survivor and El Balderino team member says, “I have heard those words. ‘You have cancer’. I can’t imagine being a child and hearing that statement. So I am shaving my head so we can stop this awful disease.”

The 4th Annual St. Paddy’s Day Party is on Saturday, March 10th at Center of the Universe Brewing Company. This free celebration is open to the public and is from 1pm-10pm.

The event will include:

  • Live music all day from: The Satellite Jam Band, Gift Horse, VEXINE, The Royal We RVA, and Something Shiny Band

  • A huge silent auction (all proceeds benefit St. Baldrick’s)

  • $2,000 worth of raffle prizes (all proceeds benefit St. Baldricks)

  • Food trucks: Grandpa Eddie’s Alabama Ribs & BBQ and Freekin’ Rican (a portion of food sales from Freekin’ Rican will benefit St. Baldrick’s)

  • Limited Irish Beer Release – 100% of this beer’s sales from the event will go to the St. Baldrick’s charity

  • Lots of St. Patrick’s Day spirit and fun!

“It’s pretty amazing to see this event come together each year. Tons of local business owners  and businesses donate items for the silent auction, musicians donate their time and talents for the event, and volunteers make calls and reach out to their families and friends to raise funds. The Satellite community is a strong one. This type of camaraderie among the Satellites makes us at the brewery proud to be their ‘forever home’.” – Phil Ray, Center of the Universe Co-founder

Bring your green hat, high spirits, and thirst for FUN. Let’s help eradicate childhood cancer!