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River Bandits Win Charity Award

Zach Wilson, WVIK News

The Quad Cities River Bandits’ charitable work has not gone unnoticed. On Thursday at Modern Woodmen Park, Ballpark Digest honored the team with its award for “Best Commitment to Charity.”

Following this year’s flooding, the team partnered with Genesis Health System to raise $101,000 dollars for flood relief. River Bandits Owner Dave Heller says he’s accepting this award on behalf of the entire Quad Cities, not just the team.

“This is not just our money. It’s not just my money or [Genesis CEO Doug Cropper]'s money. This is the money that was raised from Genesis employees, Genesis staff, and all of the people who came to River Bandits games over the course of June and July and made donations to support their friends and their neighbors. Because, that’s what the Quad Cities is all about.”

While no other team has won the award more than once, this is the third time for the River Bandits after previously receiving the honor in 2015 and 2017.

Ballpark Digest Publisher Kevin Reichard says the River Bandits’ charitable work stood out because the team raised the money for others while also struggling with the flood. He was also impressed with how they raised the money.

“A lot of teams have charitable efforts that include tickets, in-kind services, like they’ll give kids hot dogs. This isn’t the case here in the Quad Cities, this is cash. You guys are raising cash for flood relief efforts and that’s very notable.”

The River Bandits also donated 80,000 dollars for college scholarships and 50,000 dollars so local children coudl get free flu shots.