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Local ice warrior cuts $15,000 cheque for Lloydminster KidSport

By June 22, 2022No Comments
Travis Levitsky couldn’t hold back his happiness on Monday night as he presented a $15,000 cheque to Lloydminster KidSport alongside his daughter and community sponsors. Taylor Weaver Meridian Source

 

Travis Levitsky was all smiles on Monday evening as he presented a $15,000 cheque to Lloydminster KidSport.

The funds were raised through corporate sponsorships Levitsky acquired prior to competing in the Ice Wars International debut event on May 21 at the River Cree Casino in Edmonton.

Although a relatively new organization, Ice Wars International has taken combat sports to a new level and has been dubbed prize fighting on ice. 

Ice Wars fights feature the toughest players in the sport of hockey, and here’s the catch, there’s no hockey being played.

“We’re here today for KidSport, Ice Wars International, and some sponsorship for that last event we had on at River Cree,” said Levitsky.

“We got some sponsorship money to put some advertisement for local companies I’ve worked with and who have sponsored me in events before, and we decided to donate all of that money to KidSport here in Lloydminster.”

Companies that sponsored Levitsky had their logos printed onto the pant covers he wore the night of the event. 

“I just wanted to get some exposure on KidSport and the importance of sports in a lot of kids’ lives,” he said.

“My nephew, Kage Miazga, he used to and still donates money that he makes to a good cause and a good charity, so if he can do something like that, why can’t anybody else, you know?”

Growing up, playing various sports was a big part of Levitsky’s life and he knows the benefits that come from playing sports at a young age. Having seen those benefits firsthand, Levitsky felt the need to give back.

“It’s one of those things where sports has been really beneficial in my life, and if it’s beneficial in my life, I’m sure it’s beneficial in other kids’ lives,” he said.

“Getting kids involved in sport is hugely important,” he said. 

“Some of these kids, if they have problems at home or they’re not rooted at school, their way to get away is sports, and that’s maybe going to be the best teaching or part of their life; when they have a positive coach in a sport, that may be what turns them around, going from a bad path to a good path.”

Kaley McLeod, chair of Lloydminster KidSport, couldn’t thank Levitsky enough for the donation as she knows how far the funds will go within the organization.

“We were very surprised when we found out. Travis kind of called me out of the blue, and we’re super appreciative. Lloydminster is full of a lot of very worthwhile non-profit associations, so the fact he chose us is pretty amazing,” said McLeod.

“As you can imagine, coming out of another recession, everyone’s kind of trying to dig from the same place, so this is amazing. 

“It will fund up to 30 kids in sport that couldn’t afford it without this help.”

With all of KidSport funding coming in from grants and donations, McLeod added just how special and timely Levitsky’s donation was.

“It’s huge. The kids we support wouldn’t be able to participate in organized sport if it wasn’t for people like ourselves,” she said. 

“On an annual basis, we fund anywhere from 125-150 kids, on average, to the tune of roughly $500 per child. But in some of the worst years, that wasn’t all that long ago, we funded 300 kids to the tune of nearly $100,000.”

McLeod also touched on the fact the number of kids needing financial assistance for sports has gone up over the years.

“The need coming through the recession as well as kids just wanting to get back out and into sport that never had a desire before (has gone up),” she said. “Just the desire to reconnect and get out and be social.”

For Levitsky, he’s not finished with Ice Wars and is already getting amped up for his next event. 

“There’s three more events that we’re involved in and the next event is Aug. 6 at the River Cree,” he said.

“I’m trying to get Ice Wars International to be a part of this and I’m going to challenge everybody to see if they can match any donations we get. If it’s not for KidSport Lloydminster, it’ll have something to do with sports, so we’re just in talks right now about that stuff, but I’d love to try and raise more money as well as more awareness.”

Regardless of which organization receives funding from future events, it was important to Levitsky to keep those funds local.

“I didn’t have to do this, but all of those companies gave me money to sponsor me and put their logos on national TV, and we decided to help out a good cause and challenge some people,” he said.

“You could have all the money in the world, but if you don’t do anything with it, what’s the point?”