CARLETON PLACE – As the dust settles on a most unusual and somber Remembrance Day, the Carleton Place and District Memorial Hospital (CPDMH) Foundation and the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 192 (Legion) are preparing to take their partnership to a new level with Catch the Ace Online.

Last month, the coveted Ace of Spades was caught when Chad Hastie’s ticket was pulled from the barrel at the weekly draw held live on Facebook on Oct. 22. Hastie and Leanne Hall were onsite immediately following the draw to receive their cheque for $24,996.

Presenting the cheque on behalf of the two organizations were Royal Canadian Legion Branch 192 President Peter Schaffer and Carleton Place and District Memorial Hospital Foundation chair Ian Grant. As a memorial hospital, built in memory and honour of local veterans, collaboration has existed between the two organizations from the beginning.

CPDMH Foundation representatives are involved in the annual Remembrance Day Ceremony led by our local legion; and through a strong history of partnership, the Legion Branch 192 has become a major donor to the CPDMH Foundation. It seemed like a natural fit for both parties to join together for this fundraising initiative.

Catch the Ace is a game of chance played weekly until the Ace of Spades is caught. Catch the Ace caught on and, within a few months, tickets started to sell out every week. The raffles took place at the Legion and were broadcasted live on Facebook every Thursday at 6:30 p.m. Like many other things, the raffle was suspended from March until July due to COVID-19.

Fast forward to Oct. 22 and it was week 43 with only 10 cards left. Hastie’s ticket was drawn. His chosen envelope, which was number one, revealed the elusive Ace of Spades netting him $24,996. The CPDMH Foundation and Legion Branch 192 were also winners having raised $36,508 to be split between both charities.

“We are very happy with the success of our first Catch the Ace and our partnership with the Foundation,” Schaffer said. “As the weeks came and went with no winner, the suspense progressively became more intense, my new partner in crime, Ian Grant, here to share in the anticipation, along with members of both organizations, made it all that much better.

“The foundation is very grateful for this opportunity to partner with our local Legion for Catch the Ace,” Grant said. “We are most appreciative to the Legion volunteers for all their hard work and dedication in the planning and execution of the first round of Catch the Ace. Thank you to everyone who participated in this event, benefitting both organizations, by purchasing tickets week after week.”

“Building on our success, we are excited to announce we will be taking Catch the Ace to a new level in the New Year,” CPDMH Foundation executive director Robyn Arseneau said. “We are in the process of securing our provincial license for Catch the Ace Online which will allow us to increase our reach and raise even more support for the benefit of our community hospital and Legion.”

Arseneau says Catch the Ace Online brings with it many advantages including the ability to sell an unlimited number of tickets to people across the province of Ontario. Especially during these times with COVID-19, participants will be able to safely purchase tickets from the comfort of their own home. A variety of price points will also be available for ticket purchases. Stay tuned to the CPDMH Foundation website and social media pages, as well as the Legion Branch 192 Facebook page “as we get ready to launch this bigger, better and safer Catch the Ace Online.”