The event will be a memorable industry gathering offering drink specials, a buffet, Big Josh-inspired memorabilia, a “Big Josh look-a-like” contest at 8 p.m., a silent auction, a 50/50 raffle giveaway around 10 p.m. and an appearance by the big guy himself.
This past summer, the San Diego service industry was rocked with some unsettling news about Big Josh Gehlbach, employed by Miller's for several years, when he abruptly left work one afternoon with a headache. Later, he found himself in the ER diagnosed with a fast-acting form of cancer.
Not only did this news shake Josh and his wife, but it stirred up some harsh realizations among the service industry community, many of whom are left without medical safety nets or financial security in the event of a life challenge.
Some of Big Josh’s closest friends subsequently created the Big Josh Foundation, a fundraising campaign geared toward raising money, for not only Josh to fight his battle, but other industry members who may face similar challenges in the future.
"Since moving here almost 10 years ago and meeting Josh through the industry family, I have yet to meet someone in my life that is so selfless, hard working, and full of positivity,” said Jeff Shallcross, a colleague of Josh's at Miller's. “I then started working side-by-side with him and witnessed how truly big his heart is and how amazing a man he is. All you want to do is anything and everything to help him in a time of need."
Leading up to the event, volunteers and friends of Josh will be selling 50/50 raffle tickets, with half of the money given to the Big Josh Foundation and the other half raffled off to one lucky recipient at approximately 10 p.m. on event night.
The inaugural Big Josh event was hosted by PB Shore Club last year. It attracted hundreds of people who've known and loved this gentle giant. The event raised $12,000 for the foundation from the raffle alone, not including T-shirt sales and donations. In addition to shirt sales, proceeds from the event’s food and drinks sales at Miller’s will also be given to the Big Josh Foundation. Momentum is building and this fundraising event is gearing up to be one unbelievable party for an incredible cause.
Miller’s Field has overlooked Mission Blvd for 10 years, providing a lively atmosphere for sports fans in the Pacific Beach neighborhood. Owner Glenn Miller and his staff couldn’t be more excited to show their love and support for Josh, who reigned as a 6-foot-8-inch tall icon behind the bar for several years.
For more information about the event, email [email protected]
Want to help?
When: 5 p.m. to midnight Monday, Jan. 30
Where: Miller’s Field sports bar, 4465 Mission Blvd.
Info: Email [email protected]