TORONTO -- The seven finalists have been selected for the first All-Star Fans Choose grant, the Twins and Major League Baseball announced Tuesday.
More than 100 non-profit groups from the Upper Midwest applied for the $500,000 grant, which is a part of the most extensive legacy giving campaign in All-Star history. With the Twins set to host the Midsummer Classic on July 15, more than $8 million will go toward local projects and national charitable initiatives.
Fans can now vote at AllStarGame.com/FansChoose through July 10 to help choose their favorite non-profit among the seven finalists.
"We're thrilled to be able to offer this opportunity to local non-profits thanks to the generosity of Major League Baseball, the Pohlad Family Foundation and the Minnesota Twins Community Fund," said Twins senior director of community affairs Bryan Donaldson. "This is the first time a charity project of this nature has been done in conjunction with the All-Star Game and it's truly unique to put this decision in the fans' hands."
A panel of judges, consisting of representatives from MLB and the Twins, determined the final seven non-profit projects based on the following criteria: impact on community, scope, timeline, environmental improvement, sustainable design, and quality of application.
The seven finalists are all from Minnesota: Camp Fire Minnesota (Chanhassen), Channel One Regional Food Bank (Rochester), Cookie Cart (Minneapolis), Hmong American Farmers Association (Vermillion), Madison Claire Foundation (Woodbury), Minnesota Adult and Teen challenge (St. Michael) and People Serving People (Minneapolis).
Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.