Last night's ALS benefit at Citizens Bank Park raised a record $893,033, propelled by a highest-ever turnout of more than 6,800 fans.
The 22d Phillies Phestival featured players, coaches and broadcasters at 23 autograph stations; photo booths with ace Roy Halladay, catcher Carlos Ruiz, and manager Charlies Manuel; auctions that raised more than $100,000; games for fans to play; memorabilia-filled grab bags; and sales of food and drink.
Snagging the biggest bucks from bidders - $4,700 - was a baseball used in Halladay's no-hitter and signed by him and Ruiz. The next two top items in the live auction were a jersey worn by Halladay in a home game, which fetched $4,300, and a 1934 Yankees baseball signed by Lou Gehrig and others, which went for $4,000.
Tops among the 115 items in the silent auction were a helmet worn by Ryan Howard in a game ($3,000), a Howard-worn St. Patrick's Day Jersey ($1,500) and a baseball signed by the 2011 squad ($1,500).
Contributions also came from vendors, such as Aramark and Chickie's and Pete's, and sponsors Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP, and Comcast SportsNet.
Since 1984, when the Phillies choose to make the fight against ALS their main charity, the club has raised more than $12.7 million to fight the deadly neuromuscular disorder, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease.
"Once again our fans have shown tremendous support for the Phillies, but more importantly for the many patients who suffer from this devastating disease," said Phillies president David Montgomery. ". . . Monies raised during tonight's event will go a long way in providing the much-needed patient care and services."