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Black Tie was an "unforgettable" experience for all

by Kristyn Repke / Columbus Blue Jackets


Last night, a celebration took place at center ice in Nationwide Arena. Columbus Blue Jackets players, staff and families were in attendance, but this celebration was about more than the hockey team.

Together, the Blue Jackets organization, its partners, the Columbus Blue Jackets Foundation and the central Ohio community unofficially raised more than $500,000 at the 8th annual Black Tie Blue Jackets Style Show (presented by Medical Mutual) in support of the fight against pediatric cancer, the central cause of the Columbus Blue Jackets Foundation. Overall, that amount surpassed last year's record-setting total of about $400,000.

The annual style show event provides an unforgettable experience to everyone in attendance, combining a fancy night out with a style show, celebrating the 11 Columbus Blue Jackets Foundation heroes as they walk the runway alongside Blue Jackets players and their families.

This year's style show theme was "Capturing Moments," and the evening did just that.

After a cocktail hour where guests were invited to bid on silent auction items and mingle, the program began with the heroes taking the stage to be recognized in front of those in attendance. FOX Sports Ohio broadcaster Dave Maetzold and Blue Jackets Ambassador Jody Shelley emceed the program, while Blue Jackets forward Derek MacKenzie and mom of hero Hailey, Denise Ell, shared their personal experiences with pediatric cancer. The Denison University acapella group Ladies Night Out and America's Got Talent's Joe Castillo provided the evening's entertainment.

Following dinner, a live auction of prizes such as a V.I.P. All-Star Game experience, a trip to Paris, a golf package with James Wisniewski and PGA golfer Jason Day, and a dinner with the Davidson's took place on the event floor. Then, the heroes and their Blue Jackets escorts took the stage for the main event: the style show.

Heroes Addison, Griffin, Anastasia, Maggie, Ian, Logan, Emily, Austin, Ryan, Hailey and John strutted their stuff down the runway. Though they were accompanied by Blue Jackets players, the heroes were the stars of the show--the focus of every attendee's attention--and they enjoyed every moment of the experience.

Hero John Wills and the Wisniewskis were the final hero group to take the stage. John walked down the runway in style, putting his hands out for those in attendance to high-five him as he walked by. Blue Jackets players, organization partners and donors left their seats in order to cheer John on and high-five him, applauding his courageous fight against cancer.

It's captured moments like these that are a reminder that the celebration is about more than just the organization--it's about the community coming together, united to fight a single cause.

To learn more about the Columbus Blue Jackets Foundation and its work with pediatric cancer and other community initiatives, visit their website at For more Black Tie Blue Jackets coverage, visit the HUB on
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