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25-Hour Gaming Marathon for the Children’s Stollery

By Destiny Meilleur

A 25-hour gaming marathon being held this month will raise money for sick children at Edmonton’s Stollery Children’s Hospital.

Extra Life Edmonton is one of many Extra Life guilds throughout North America. A company that originally started out of Orange, Texas, Extra Life’s mission is to raise money for sick kids or programs that help children. The Edmonton guild fundraises for the Stollery Children’s Hospital. Lisa Hawthorne, the President of the Extra Life Edmonton guild believes theirs is a noble charity to support.

“[Extra Life was created to] honor a little girl who passed away from cancer; her name was Victoria Enmom. She was sick in the hospital, and her doctor at the time thought, ‘Hey, I’ve got an idea. Why don’t we send her some games?’ So he put a call out to the community, and they came out and sent her a crap ton of games for her to play while she was sick in the hospital. […] When she passed away, he had started Extra Life,” said Hawthorne.

On November 6th, Extra Life Edmonton will hold their annual 25-hour virtual gaming marathon. It is 25-hours because of the daylight savings time change. People can watch the stream on the Extra-Life Twitch, join the community on their discord, or sign up to fundraise and play games on their website. Those who play and fundraise have the opportunity to win fun prizes.

“We’re giving away [prizes] to top fundraisers. If you raise over $750, you can be entered to win a PS5. If you fundraise over $500, you can be entered to win an OLED Switch. For the lower tiers, we’ve got some gift cards for various stores and stuff. Then we have one really special prize,” Hathorne said excitedly. “If you raise over $1,000, you get [the chance of] being a beta tester. Three people will have the opportunity to work with Improbable to beta test an unannounced, unreleased video game that’s in development right now.”

For people feeling hesitant or scared to be a part of the community, Hawthorne was adamant that taking the step into the Extra Life team is worth it. 

“I was super shy in my first year. I’ve been doing this for 10 years as a fundraiser, and it’s our 10-year anniversary for Extra Life Edmonton as a whole. I wasn’t really afraid of creating my page and asking friends and families for donations, as much as I was shy to come to the community. So, but you know what if you take that step, it is the most worthwhile thing that you’ll ever do,” said Hawthorne.

Hawthorne is raising money and gaming for her nephew.

“I play for [my nephew] specifically, because the programs that need to be in place for him are being cut. So that takes money. It takes fundraising dollars for a lot of these programs for the Stollery and for any other hospital out there. So I specifically play in honor of my nephew, Riley Hawthorne,” said Hawthorne.

Extra Life Game Day will have cool panels with organizations like CTV and a 3D printing company that will also be printing the trophies for the winners. Look for YEGExtraLife on Twitch to check out the event on November 6th at 10 a.m. until November 7th at 10 a.m. 

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