Fire trucks, wine and Pascal Dupuis

Written by Gretchen McKay on

Beer might be the drink of choice during a Pens game at Consol Energy Center, but every once in a while hockey fans like to go upscale with a fine glass of wine.

Especially when drinking one or two includes a chance to meet Pittsburgh Penguins forward Pascal Dupuis while also raising money for a great cause.

A handful of online tickets are still available to tonight's Corks and Pucks event benefitting Ballou Skies, a charity started in 2009 by PLB Sports president Ty Ballou to raise funds and awareness for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. The most common form of muscular dystrophy among children, Duchenne also is the most severe: those afflicted (1 out of every 3,500 boys) gradually lose their ability to walk, sit upright, move their arms and legs and breathe without a ventilator. Survival beyond age 30 is rare.
The event, which runs from 6 to 9 p.m. at Engine House 25 in Lawrenceville, will include a variety of wines for the tasting, small plates and live music. There also will be a silent auction of sports memorabilia (including one of Dupuis' used game sticks), gift baskets and gift certificates to local restaurants, with 100 percent of the proceeds going to the charity. 

For Mr. Ballou, the fight to find a cure for Duchenne is personal: His oldest son, Ryan, profiled in a series of stories in the PG, was born with the disease.

Since 2009, the charity -- it has a fundraising triathlon team --  has raised more than $150,000 for Ohio State University's Heart and Vascular Center. That's where Dr. Stephen Cook and his team of physicians and researchers are collaborating on a drug treatment for Duchenne that shows promise for delaying heart failure. 

Engine House 25 is located at 3339 Penn Ave. Tickets cost $50 and can be puchased here

allou Skies and Post-Gazette photos

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