An Edmonton man’s Beards on Ice skating tour saw him skate in his hometown on Monday night.

Realtor Jerry Aulenbach said he started the campaign five years ago to raise money for Royal LePage’s Shelter Foundation.

“[It] will help women’s shelters and a program called the Fourth R — reading, writing, arithmetic and relationships, Aulenbach said. “It’s all about making lives better, happier and safer.

“I want to tell anyone who is in a difficult relationship right now, who is facing abuse or neglect: don’t lose hope, don’t give up.

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“There are shelters that can help you — if you have a trusted friend, confide in them.”

Aulenbach said his tour usually sees him skate in nine cities across Canada each year — from the beginning of January to the end of February — but this year, he wanted to make it big.

Aulenbach’s tour sees him encourage people to join him for a social skate, even though he admits he is not an elite skater. He said he learned most of his skating skills in the past five years from doing the fundraising events.

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He is going coast to coast and vising 20 cities, with a goal of raising $20,000.

In previous years, the most he has raised is $11,000.

“Any Royal LePage realtor can do their own fundraiser, and it all goes to the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation,” Aulenbach said.

“It’s a national foundation and it’s totally funded by Royal LePage. One-hundred per cent of what you donate goes to them.”

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Aulenbach said Monday’s skate in Edmonton marked his 18th social skate on this tour. Beards on Ice will be in Calgary on Thursday before finishing in Montreal on Saturday.

“Sometimes it’s a big turnout, sometimes it’s small,” he said. “Sometimes it’s too warm and the ice is melted, and sometimes it’s -40 C and you do one lap and that’s it.”


© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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