Kershaw’s Challenge Honors Brad Paisley and Kimberly Williams-Paisley with Kershaw’s Challenge Impact Award
By: Angela Redding
Photos: Diana Castro/Premier Photo Int’l.
Los Angeles, CA, (The Hollywood Times) 8/9/2019–“ Clearly the work of Kershaw’s Challenge could not be done without every single one of y’all here. We want y’all to know that because of the sponsors, every single dollar raised tonight gets to go to these children and y’all, Clayton and I have been to Zambia multiple times, the Dominican republic multiple times.. We’ve met these kids. We know these organizations by heart. We have gotten to see these projects start with dirt and go from the ground up,” stated Ellen Kershaw. “And I have to tell y’all, lives are being changed. This is working and these kids who are in critical situations, at risk, there is life changing impact happening and that’s because of y’all. We are so thankful that you all trust us and you believe in the mission of Kershaw’s Challenge and what we’re trying to do because we believe that there is bigger things happening and each of us can make a difference.”
Clayton Kershaw and his wife Ellen called on friends from the entertainment world as well as sports stars to join them for a night of fun. Guests were invited to play ping pong, listen to good music, eat good food and of course to give to support the Kershaw’s charity, Kershaw’s Challenge.
Pitching and Ping-Pong
Clayton Kershaw, ace pitcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers, can throw a strike-out pitch with enough force to cause a batter to swing, miss and wonder, “What just happened?”
Now you may think, “That’s all well and good but what does his pitching have to do with ping-pong?”
Well, as great of a pitcher as he is, he is just as much of a force and fierce competitor at table tennis.
You have to have a well conditioned arm to pitch a strike-out baseball game and ping pong is no different. If you have a poor serving arm and or an inadequate return, you are just swinging at the air hoping to hit the ball and more than likely missing it a great deal of the time. Kershaw comes to play and he plays to win.
The 7th annual ”Ping Pong 4 Purpose” charity tournament was held at Dodger Stadium, August 8th, in Los Angeles, CA and did not disappoint. Many guests arrived and walked the Blue Carpet ready to pick up a paddle and do as much damage to their opponent(s) as possible.
Robert Horry, of the Los Angeles Lakers, won seven championships during his 16 year career in the NBA was one of the night’s ping-pong participants and stopped to chat with THT. We asked him about his ping-pong game and tested his ping-pong Olympic knowledge.
We posed the same questions to actor and former NFL player Isaiah Mustafa.
Other guests were excited to just be apart of the evening to support the Kershaw’s charity, Kershaw’s Challenge to help beneficiaries empower children and communities in Los Angeles, the Dominican Republic, and Africa. Guests were also pumped to watch friends or family members win or get annihilated during the Ping Pong 4 Purpose tournament.
“This year we’re getting to partner with three organizations here in Los Angeles who are the hands and feet of change happening in this city. And that’s the L A Dream Center that’s right down the road from the Stadium, it’s Just Keep Livin Foundation, the organization started by Matthew McConahay and the Dodgers Foundation and building our Dodgers’ dream fields in Compton. We are so thrilled to partner with y’all. Thank you for being the hands and feet on the front line of change here in Los Angeles.” Ellen Kershaw
Ellen Kershaw at the 7th Annual Ping Pong 4 Purpose charity event benefiting ‘Kershaw’s Challenge’ at Dodger Stadium on August 8, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (photo: Diana Castro/Premier Photo Int’l.)
Some of the talent in attendance this year were Nolan Gould, Quincy Brown, Haley Joel Osment, Omar Miller, Alan Bersten, Quincy Brown, Bryan Cranston, Mario Lopez, Isaiah Mustafa, Casey Sadler, Chris Harrison and Lauren Zima, Brad Paisley and Kimberly Williams-Paisley, Jaleel White, Colton Unerwood, Gavin MacLeod, and Jill Whelan along with Dodgers players Cody Bellinger, Corey Seager, Joc Pederson, Justin Turner, Kenley Jansen, Kenta Maeda, Max Muncy, Ross Stripling, Russell Martin, and AJ Pollock, Hyun-Jin Ryu. Sports stars included Talen-Horton-Tucker (LA Lakers) and Robert Horry (LA Lakers).
Once inside Dodger Stadium, Clayton and Ellen Kershaw kicked off the evening by welcoming guests and giving a very appreciative thank you to their sponsors for the evening. Before the ping-pong tournament began, the Kershaw’s presented the Paisleys with their organization’s Kershaw’s Challenge Impact Award.
Brad and Kimberly were very touched to receive such an honor and recognition from the Kershaws for their history of philanthropic advocacy and non-profit organization, The Store. The Store is a free grocery store, to serve children and families in need in their Nashville community and address issues of hunger and food security.
On being honored by Clayton and Ellen Kershaw, Brad stated, “It’s amazing. I’ve never met a human being with more heart. He (Clayton) and his wife Ellen are our inspiration for how you can be the best couple you can be and how you can make the world a better place. I find so much inspiration in them and I’m thrilled to be here with them tonight.”
The event raised funds to help organizations such as the Dream Center, Just Keep Livin Foundation (Matthew and Camila McConaughey’s charity), Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation, International Justice Mission, Both Ends Believing, and Arise Africa whose aim is to create new parks, help with classroom needs, after-school programs, and programs helping sex trafficking victims and orphaned children.
Emcee for the evening, Bryan Cranston (best known for his role in Breaking Bad and Malcom in the Middle) mentioned that within the last eight years, prior to the night’s event, Kershaw’s Challenge has given out $7.5 million dollars to the organizations they support.
This year’s tournament raised a total of $800,000.
Ping Pong Winners
As far as who won the Ping-Pong 4 Purpose tournament, the one and only team of Kershaw and Bellinger, of course, with a winning score of 21/7 over last year’s winners.
About Kershaw’s Challenge
Kershaw’s Challenge was founded by Clayton and Ellen Kershaw in 2011 and works with organizations to impact lives in Los Angeles, Dallas, Zambia, and the Dominican Republic. For more information about Kershaw’s Challenge, visit www.kershawschallenge.com.
Event: Kershaw’s Challenge 7th Annual Ping Pong 4 Purpose
Hosts: Clayton and Ellen Kershaw
Emcee: Bryan Cranston
Kershaw’s Challenge Impact Award Honorees: Country Music star Brad Paisley and actress wife Kimberly Williams-Paisley
UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital, Hankook Tire, HiHo Cheeseburger, SPIN, STIGA, and FIJI Water.
Major Sponsors include:
American Airlines, TOMS, Hope Faith and Grace Fund, Goldman Sachs and Security Benefit.
Official Prize Sponsor:
Other key sponsors include Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites, Designer 8, Phat Scooter, The Hidden Garden Floral Design Studio, Lou’s Golf Carts, Premiere Lighting & Production, MS Event Production.
A Kershaw’s Challenge Event. Date: August 8, 2019. Time: 7:30 p.m. Location: Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles, CA