|Arm Wrestling Match to Benefit Disabled Individuals|
|For more information, contact Marketing and Development Manager Merab Favorite, Merab.firstname.lastname@example.org or 941-371-8820 ext. 1025 or cell (941)725-7485|
|SARASOTA – Two local champions for charity will face off in an arm wrestling match benefiting The Haven, an organization that offers programs and services to children and adults with disabilities, on Tuesday, May 14 at 10 a.m.|
The match will be held in the Frank Stern Building in the fitness center on the Haven campus (4455 Desoto Road, Sarasota, 34235) and broadcast via Facebook Live on both The Haven and Florida Center for Early Childhood pages.
Haven enthusiast Christopher Seth Winners, aka ‘The Hurricane’, challenged John Annis of the Charles & Margery and Barancik Foundation, aka ‘Big Bad John’, to a physical duel in order to raise awareness about the abilities of people living with disabilities. Winners was born with a life-long disability due to Fetal Alcohol Syndrome.
The public is invited to attend or watch virtually. Onlookers are encouraged to donate in honor of their favorite opponent – The Hurricane or Big Bad John – using the hashtag #MatchOfTheCentury. All proceeds will benefit The Haven, a community partner of the Florida Center for Early Childhood.
The contestants welcome positive and kind words of encouragement during the broadcast and will be available to sign autographs after the event concludes.
“This is just a fun reminder that anyone, despite their disability, can shine and succeed with the right people supporting them,” said Kathryn Shea, CEO of the Florida Center for Early Childhood and mother of ‘The Hurricane.’
|Meet the Competitors!|
|Christopher ‘The Hurricane’ Winners|
“Never Give Up.”
Christopher Seth Winners never let his life-long developmental disability get him down. Now known as ‘The Hurricane’ this former foster child overcame multiple challenges to get where he is today. Adopted at 4 months, his parents Kathryn Shea and Stephen Winners were quick to identify his determination and “never give up” attitude. Even as a kid he was a barreling cyclone of positive energy!
Now 30 years old, The Hurricane’s fierce need to learn and succeed has never been more apparent. His steam is fueled by the advances he’s made over the years – thanks to many caring teachers and individuals that have guided him along the way.
He gained much of his strength over the past four years through classes at the Haven, where he advanced significantly in social communication, creativity, humor, problem-solving AND physical fitness…. and he’s got the muscles to prove it!
(Bio provided by competitor)John ‘Big Bad John’ Annis
“I’m planning on taking some of the wind out of the Hurricane “ A world-traveled Marine veteran and student of the school of hard knocks, “Big Bad John” Annis has seen his fair share of strong-arm showdowns. Despite his pedigree, John now acts as the Senior Vice President of Collaboration and Impact for Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation. His hobbies include eating, relaxing in his recliner, and watching his Jack Russell Terrier “Needy” sleep. He has attended countless marathons–not as a runner, but as an enthusiastic spectator. John has a weight bench, barbell, dumbbells, and a curling bar in his garage. He frequently walks past them on his way to mow the lawn.
Traditionally, John minds his own business, avoids the spotlight, and does his best to stay out of trouble, but on April 13, 2019 his life was suddenly changed when ‘The Hurricane’ was literally flexing his muscles on Facebook and looking for an arm-wrestling challenge. Kathryn Shea passed on the opportunity, but tagged Big Bad John into the ring to make an excellent competitor/victim.
John is big, not that bad, but not smart enough to decline the challenge.
(Bio provided by competitor)