A record crowd, a record haul for the Children’s Aid Foundation!

Newza20Record turnout, record haul for Children’s Aid Foundation

Toronto Star wins 4th straight title, new blood from National Post, The Globe and Mail and Hamilton Spectator/Thomson Reuters rock the joint.

 For immediate release: Nov. 10, 2014

TORONTO — Wow! Thanks to a growing legion of Newzapalooza fans, super sponsors and “wagers” from bosses at Toronto Sun, The Globe and Mail, Toronto Star and National Post, more than $16,000 was raised Friday night for the Children’s Aid Foundation. That’s double what is usually raised each year, making this 10th show the best ever. To date, Newzapalooza has raised close to $90,000 for the charity.

It was arguably also the best year for talent. Not a single band sucked, according to unnamed musical aficionados who were on hand scouting for a new reality series to be called Hacks with AxesThe Bloody Media Battle of the Bands™ (Expected to feature sweaty journalists in cramped rehearsal spaces). In fact, the fight for the new Newzapalooza trophy was so tight that our panel of celebrity judges — made up of comedian and activist Martha Chaves, comedian and actress Geri Hall, Mark Towhey, former chief of staff for Rob Ford, and Olympian Adam van Koeverden — fought mightily amongst themselves in choosing the top three bands.

In the end, the judges’ numbers (yes, actual numbers) slightly favoured Toronto Star’s Holy Joe & The Principles over The Globe and Mail’s Fun with Discipline. The Bulletin Kill — a killer 3-piece band that is part BNN, part The Canadian Press, part The Globe and Mail — took 3rd place honours. Newcomers Conrad Black Sabbath from the National Post had the best band name and put on a stunning show, and, according to many Monday morning quarterbacks who were on the Twitterverse this weekend, were robbed (surely, people who get pay cheques from the National Post – ed).

At the end of the night, honorary Newzapalooza chair Dexter Westaway — son of the late Jonathan Jenkins, who co-founded the event — presented Jesse McLean of Holy Joe & The Principles with a spectacularly kitschy trophy. Bragging rights will be up for grabs at next year’s show.

A huge shout out and thank you to host Tom Power of CBC Radio 2. He kept the night on track and no one was assaulted.

Special thanks to this year’s sponsors Home Depot, The Opera House, Long & McQuade Musical Instruments, Ace Awards Inc., Toronto Sun, Toronto Star, The Globe and Mail, National Post,     Qi Salon, Pizzeria Libretto, New Balance Toronto, Girl About Toronto Multimedia, X-copper, Ace Bakery and The Ten Spot Beauty Bars.

We’d also like to thank Athena Ellinas-Towers and the staff at The Opera House and acknowledge volunteers Eric Andrew-Gee, Nick Westoll, Katherine deClerq, Tamara Khandaker, Joe Hall and Patty Winsa for working the doors and pushing draw tickets. Kudos to Brian Hughes for designing this year’s ticket and to Aneurin Bosley for website help. Jaymz Bee was kind enough to oversee the creation of a new permanent trophy and ate part of the cost. Thanks to Jim Slotek for landing a couple of our fine judges this year and to Scott Simmie, Postmedia, CP Video Services and Dave Bidini for helping to produce a tribute video to Jonathan Jenkins.

Lastly, all of us on the Newzapalooza planning committee — Moe Doiron, Robyn Doolittle, Rob & Natasha Granatstein, Emily Pazzano, Jim Rankin, Graeme Roy, Michelle Shephard and Tanya Talaga — thank the hundreds who turned out for a good cause and a rocking good night that is fast becoming the media gathering of the year — due in large part to our dear JJ.

See you next November.

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For more information, visit www.newzapalooza.ca, or like and follow @Newzapalooza on Facebook and Twitter.