By Kirk Sanderson

The Mitchell Thorp Foundation (MTF) and San Diego Aviators World Team Tennis will present the Pillars of Hope Tennis Smash at the Omni La Costa Resort and Spa in Carlsbad on Sunday, July 16.

The benefit event will feature an array of top-ranked professional tennis players.  Proceeds from the dinner, tennis play, and silent and live auctions will benefit the Mitchell Thorp Foundation, a nonprofit organization founded in 2009 by Carlsbad residents Brad and Beth Thorp in honor of their teenage son, Mitchell, who died of an undiagnosed illness in 2008.

The foundation’s mission is to help families in the coastal North County region, who have children suffering from life-threatening illnesses, diseases and disorders, by providing financial, emotional and resources to their desperate situations.

In addition, the foundation will present its “Pillar of Hope” awards, which honors top doctors, educators, therapists and practitioners who go above and beyond in caring for their patients, and also help educate the public on health and wellness.

This year’s honorees are Dr. Andrew Accardi of Scripps Hospital and Dr. George Tidmarsh of La Jolla Pharmaceutical.

The Mitchell Thorp Foundation, Beth Thorp says, has four programs “that have given families relief from their desperate situations. Ninety-three cents of every dollar goes to these programs to help families and their children. MTF pays the vendor directly to ensure children receive all the care they need.  MTF programs include the Medical and Home Assistance Program, Healing and Rehabilitation, the Conversion Mobility Van Program and the Youth Leadership Council, empowering our youth through MTF’s Leadership Training program to make a difference in the community in which they serve.”

The Pillars of Hope Tennis Smash will take place at the Omni La Costa Resort at 2100 Costa Del Mar Road in Carlsbad from 3:30 to 8 p.m. The event will include dinner stations with wine pairing, cash bar, live music, and silent and live auctions for such items as trips to the U.S. Open, an Alaska cruise, and vacations to Costa Rica, London, Belize and more. Tickets are $150 for the dinner and include admission to the tennis match. There’s also a kid’s clinic for $45 per child, which includes dinner, games and tennis.

To buy tickets visit www.mitchellthorp.org/events. Sponsorships are still available; interested parties may contact Beth Thorp at beth@mitchellthorp.org.

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