Virtual Snowball Derby Raises $1,600 for Pensacola Charity

Last December’s eSports Snowball Derby saw great sim racing action over the course of two separate races, all for a great cause.


For the second year, Speed51 and Five Flags Speedway partnered with 2021 Country Radio Seminar (CRS) Radio Station of the Year 98.7 Cat Country (WYCT) to help out with the 98.7 Cat Country Christmas Wish program, granting wishes to those in need in the Pensacola area during the winter holiday season.


A total of $1,600 was donated to the 98.7 Cat Country Christmas Wishes program following the eSports Snowball Derby, a $600 increase from 2019.  The money donated will be used as the seed money for this year’s program, which means the first week of Christmas Wishes 2021 will likely see multiple wishes granted by Speed51.


Amid the pandemic and Hurricane Sally, demand for the program was higher than ever.  In all, over 200 families benefitted from the Christmas Wish program.  Several of the wishes didn’t include just a few toys, but also turning the power on, groceries on the table and hope for a better 2021.


“The demand was unprecedented, but the level of giving was also up.  Looking back on 2020 it was inspiring,” said 98.7 Cat Country Program Director and Host of the Cat Pak Morning Show Brent Lane.  “We ended up granting more wishes than any previous year of the program.”


Last December was the 14th year of the 98.7 Cat Country Christmas Wish program.  In that time, they have granted wishes for countless families all around the Pensacola area.


For Lane, the best part of the program is seeing the best of people shine for a great cause.


“We started this program in 2007.  Every year it starts without a budget or an agenda.  Over the years we’ve flown family members home to take care of sick parents, granted an adoption, helped an entire school celebrate their teachers, and more.


“The program to me a way to connect people with people.  The best part of the way Christmas Wishes is done is that you always find the best in people. Everyone likes to be givers and the most rewarding thing I’ve ever had happen is having a previous wish recipient come back to grant a wish the next year.”


This year’s eSports Snowball Derby featured two separate races, with nearly 100 competitors entering both the fixed setup Snowball Derby the week before the big race, and the open setup Snowball Derby the week after.  Thomas Axsom won the fixed setup event, while Alex McCollum took the open seutp Snowball Derby.


-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51 National Correspondent – Twitter: @kgeyer3
-Photo Credit: Speed51

Virtual Snowball Derby Raises $1,600 for Pensacola Charity