In what was intended as a local outreach to benefit the Myocarditis Foundation on behalf of Elysa Rojas, Saturday's Open Closet, Open Hearts sidewalk sale will now include sports gear and memorabilia from all across the country instead of just the Colorado Rapids players.
Earlier this week Rapids head athletic trainer Jaime Rojas and wife, Jana, shared the tragic story of the sudden death of their 2-year-old daughter, Elysa, in January as a result of Myocarditis. The heart-breaking story quickly spread through social media, accomplishing one of the Rojas' goals of educating others about the rare disease. The other was to raise funds for the Myocarditis Foundation.
The Rapids Sidekicks - spearheaded by Kersten Mullan, wife of defender, Brian - will host an Open Closets, Open Hearts sidewalk sale from 5-7 p.m. MT at Eighteen 76, ahead of the Rapids match against FC Dallas on Saturday, with all proceeds going to the Myocarditis Foundation.
"When we began planning for this event to support the Rojas family and the Myocarditis Foundation we anticipated it would be greatly supported locally," Mullan told ColoradoRapids.com on Friday. "But what we've seen over the past week is also the tremendous support from around the country, with individual MLS players, teams, universities and soccer fans and personalities from all over reaching out and donating items and money to this cause."
Among the hundreds of items that will be available at low prices are:
- Dozens of new or gently used items from Colorado Rapids players, including jerseys, shorts, polos, cleats, t-shirts, training tops, training suits, bags, and more. Many are autographed. Many are brand new.
- Dozens of new or gently used U.S. National Team gear
- A golf outing at Pradera Country Club with Rapids players
- A private fly-fishing trip with Brian Mullan as the guide on private waters
- Oscar Pareja's Colombian National Team, Medellin, and FC Dallas jerseys
- A Real Salt Lake soccer ball signed by the entire club
- An FC Dallas jersey signed by the entire team
- Bumpy Pitch t-shirts and gear
- Jersey signed by the entire 2010 Colorado Rapids MLS Cup winning team
- A Stoke City (Premier League) jersey signed by Brek Shea.
- "Help Colorado Now" Rapids jerseys of former players Conor Casey, Jeff Larentowicz, and others.
Those that can't attend the sale but would like to make a donation can do directly on the Myocarditis Foundation website.