Edgar Martinez scored with fans a week ago at the Children's Ride 10 Anniversary Auction in Bellevue. When he was done, the crowd in the...

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Edgar Martinez scored with fans a week ago at the Children’s Ride 10 Anniversary Auction in Bellevue. When he was done, the crowd in the Hyatt Regency Ballroom was standing, stomping and shouting.

Martinez bid $95,000 for a custom-built Paul Yaffe motorcycle.

The retired Seattle Mariners baseball player went head-to-head with another sports celebrity — former Seattle Seahawk Chad Eaton.

The auction was part of the Imagine Guild of Children’s Hospital & Regional Medical Center’s annual motorcycle weekend. It culminated in a ride by 1,650 cyclists from Qwest Field to Pacific Raceways in Kent.

With his bid, Martinez set a record for the sale of a single item at any Children’s Hospital auction.

Having a ball

Sidney Pinch, of Redmond, recently celebrated his 92nd birthday at a luncheon at Daman’s Tavern in Redmond. He was surrounded by the Pinch Hitters, a group of longtime friends.

The name came from a gift Pinch made about 15 years ago, a donation of a $100,000 trust fund to the University of Washington tennis program. One of the tennis courts at the Nordstrom Tennis Center was named after him. Along with the naming came court privileges for Pinch and his tennis buddies.

“Up until two years ago, Sid played there every week as my partner and we always held our own,” said Fran Hogan of Sammamish.

The Pinch Hitters are a diverse group. It includes, Hogan said, three guys with one kidney each, engineers, entrepreneurs, financial advisers, a rabbi and a World War II veteran who received a Purple Heart. Most of them still play tennis.

When asked what he would like for his birthday, Pinch replied, “A little lovin’ would be nice, but I’ll settle for a piece of cake.”

Star-spangled event

Folks in Bothell know how to celebrate.

There has been a Fourth of July parade in town since before it was officially a city. Sue Kienast of the Bothell Historical Society said patriotic citizens held one in 1894.

The celebration this year runs today through Monday. The Freedom Festival starts today in the Park at Bothell Landing, 9919 N.E. 180th St.

The Hooray for USA Parade starts at noon Monday. It goes west on Main Street and north on the Bothell-Everett Highway.

In the swim

Marion Chadwick of Mercer Island trains in Lake Washington in the summer and in swimming pools each winter. The 83-year-old swimmer can outlast many younger swimmers.

Chadwick recently participated in the U.S. Senior Olympics in Pittsburgh and won a silver medal in the 500-freestyle event.

“Of course, that is not distance compared to my two-person relay from Kenmore to Renton in 1989,” Chadwick said. “That relay remains vivid in my memory forever.”

She’s not alone.

I remember that swim distinctly. I was Chadwick’s partner that day. We raised money for ARC, a nonprofit agency, and had a wonderful day.

Chadwick’s continued swimming feats are enough to inspire me to get back into the pool.

One last grin

Gail Wolz of Bellevue is a certified laugh leader who specializes in humor-therapy classes.

She shared a joke yesterday via e-mail that makes perfect sense to me.

It read, “We all get heavier as we get older because there’s a lot more information in our heads.”

Sherry Grindeland: 206-515-5633 or sgrindeland@seattletimes.com