June 20, 2023

Elks launch Cleats of Strength in support of Stollery

The Edmonton Elks on Tuesday unveiled Cleats of Strength presented by MHCare Medical, a fundraising initiative in support of the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation.

For each remaining Elks’ home game during the 2023 CFL regular season, an Edmonton player will wear a one-of-a-kind pair of cleats designed by the player in collaboration with a patient from the Stollery Children’s Hospital and Métis footwear customizer Syngyn Sperling of Momentum Customs.

Fans from anywhere in the world will be able to bid on the cleats via online auction accessible through GoElks.com/Cleats. The winning bidder receives the cleats autographed by the player who proudly wore them in the game.

“As a community-owned team, we’re excited to work with our friends at the Stollery on such a unique campaign,” says Victor Cui, Elks President & CEO.

“Cleats of Strength will give our players the chance to make a difference in the lives of kids by teaming up with them to bring their designs to life on a CFL field. This also gives our great fans an opportunity to acquire a piece of memorabilia they will treasure, while helping a great cause.”

Proceeds will go to the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation, which advances children’s health care by funding specialized care at the Stollery Children’s Hospital and across communities in northern Alberta and beyond.

“Each year the Stollery Children’s Hospital responds to as many as 317,461 patient visits,” says Stacey Amyotte, Director of major gifts and planned giving, Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation. “When you bid on a pair of cleats, you’re supporting the best programs, equipment, research and training at the Stollery Children’s Hospital, making sure the Stollery remains one of the most specialized children’s hospitals in Canada.”

The first pair of cleats will be worn by Elks linebacker Nyles Morgan, during the Green and Gold’s game against the Toronto Argonauts at Commonwealth Stadium on June 25. The auction will run from 2:30 p.m. MST on June 20 to 8 p.m. MST on June 27.

Morgan, the CFL leader in tackles per game last season and Edmonton’s 2021 Most Outstanding Rookie nominee, worked on the design alongside Sperling and Stollery kid, Finley.

The cleats feature a marine motif representing Finley’s passion for sea life. The side of each shoe is adorned, respectively, with “Go Elks” and lyrics to a song written by Finley during his stay at the Stollery, where he received a liver transplant. Morgan’s No. 45 appears on the heel of both cleats.

The cleats are painted by Sperling, owner and operator of Momentum Customs in Edmonton. Having survived a serious RSV (Respiratory syncytial virus) when he was a toddler, Sperling knows the importance of children’s health care.

“Being able to work with the kids at the Stollery and make their dream cleat come to life feeds my soul as an artist,” says Sperling. “Learning about their stories and their families’ strength through these times makes me so thankful that there is a place for children and families to get the care they need.”

Presenting partner MHCare Medical is based in Edmonton and is one of the fastest growing medical supply companies in Canada, supplying to major health authorities in North America.

“MHCare Medical is proud and honoured to be the presenting partner of this new community program, supporting the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation,” says Sam Mraiche, President and CEO of MHCare Medical. “It’s a testament to our continued commitment to giving back to our community and the advancement of health care in the province of Alberta.”