MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Twins Wives Organization is hosting an upcoming fundraiser you can be a part of to help support the Minnesota Military Family Foundation.
For Alissa Pavano, wife of Twins pitcher Carl Pavano, the blessings seem abundant.
“We’ve only been here three years,” she said. “But baseball’s given us everything. Whatever I can do to help other people…ease their situations, I want to do that.”
And on June 11, the women are hosting a dinner to help military families, as the women’s sympathy lies with the parents who have to become both a mom and a dad, with their significant other fighting abroad.
Kat Ottum knows those challenges all too well.
“When our husbands or spouses go overseas, we’re left to do everything by ourselves,” she said, reflecting on her husband’s last deployment.
Sgt. Jason Ottum was stationed with the Red Bulls last year in Kuwait, when someone broke into his family’s south Minneapolis home – just like that, everything was gone.
That’s when the Minnesota Military Family Foundation stepped up. It’s a service Kat Ottum didn’t even know was available to her.
“They came in; they wanted to know what we needed,” Kat Ottum said. “They wanted my Christmas list from the kids.”
Volunteers with the foundation also fixed the Ottum’s broken door and replaced the presents. The group went one step further, bringing Jason Ottum home from overseas, as he took a two-week leave over the holidays, surprising his kids.
“Anything we can do to help these people, and make the transition easier while they’re gone — and maybe take some pressure off — is awesome,” Alissa Pavano said. “I want to give back. We all do. I know Carl feels that way too.”
Through the fundraising dinner, “Hanging with the Majors,” the Twins, their wives and their fans will give back.
A different player eats dinner at each table. They sign autographs, take pictures and spend one-on-one time with fans. Then they take over bartending for the night.
“I’ve never bartended,” Carl Pavano said. “I know I look like it’s a natural for me, but I’ve never done it.
“I think anytime you can give back to soldiers and their families, it’s a good thing. Anytime we can give back, I think it’s extremely important.”
You, too, can hang with the majors on Monday, June 11 at Toby Keith’s I Love this Bar and Grill in St. Louis Park.
Tickets are $125 adults and $100 for kids, and that does include dinner with a player and some autographs.
Or, if you’d rather skip dinner, you can reserve a stool at the bar for $50 ($25 if you attend the dinner).