Industry News

Pita Pit® Canada Franchisees and Customers Raise $20K for Special Olympics Canada Foundation

Global Fast Casual Franchise Uses National “Be a Pita Player” Charitable Campaign to Raise Awareness and Funds for motionball

KINGSTON, OntarioNov.17, 2017 /CNW/ — Pita Pit® Canada, the fresh thinking, healthy eating brand founded in Ontario, is proud to announce that its recent “Be a Pita Player” campaign has raised $20,000 for motionball, the not-for-profit organization that builds awareness and raises funds for the Special Olympics Canada Foundation. The program, launched nationwide on October 16, asked customers to donate $1$3$5or a custom amount of their choosing with the purchase of any pita, with all proceeds going directly to motionball.

The campaign kicked off with an in-store event in Mississauga, ON that featured appearances by Special Olympics Canada athletes who appeared in motionball’s 18 ‘Marathon of Sport’ events held this summer and fall in cities across Canada. Each of the events helps to get local athletes and young adults with disabilities involved in a rewarding physical activity.

“We are incredibly proud of our franchisees and our loyal customers who truly stepped up to the plate to help make a huge impact on motionball and the Special Olympics Canada Foundation,” said Kevin Pressburger, President of Pita Pit Canada. “Since Pita Pit became the official partner of motionball we have continuously searched for new ways to raise even more awareness and support for this amazing cause. The inaugural ‘Be a Pita Player’ campaign is already helping to do that, and we can’t wait to turn it up even more.”

Pita Pit’s national partnership with motionball dates back to early 2016, and centers around two goals: raising awareness about motionball’s mission and supporting motionball’s Marathon of Sport events, held in cities across Canada. Pita Pit serves as the official lunch partner of motionball, providing fresh, healthy meals to athletes and support staff at Marathon of Sport events nationwide. Over the summer, more than 200 Pita Pit franchisees, corporate staff and vendor partners also banded together at the brand’s national conference, held in Huntsville, ON, to raise more than $45,000 for motionball.

“We are so humbled by the support we saw for this event from Pita Pit locations across Canada,” said motionball Chairman and Co-Founder Paul Etherington. “Funding is critically important to keep these impactful Marathon of Sport events going across Canada, particularly for training and travel, and these funds will allow motionball to help get even more Special Olympics athletes from across Canada involved.”

To honor Pita Pit franchisees who went above and beyond with their fundraising efforts for the “Be a Pita Player” fundraising event, Pita Pit Canada held a contest to name the top regional fundraisers from across its franchise system. Winners from each region will receive a trip for two to attend a motionball fundraising gala of their choice in either HalifaxToronto or Calgary. The honorees include:

  • Toronto, ON Franchisee Nick Koinis
  • Saint John, NB Franchisee Marcia Lunn
  • Nanaimo, BC Franchisee Brooke Bestwick

Through fundraising efforts over the last two years, with the support of franchisees, vendors, suppliers and customers, Pita Pit Canada has now raised more than $100,000 to help support motionball.

“We’re committed to turning up that impact even more in 2018,” said Pita Pit Canada CEO Chris Fountain. “motionball’s mission aligns perfectly with what Pita Pit Canada is all about: giving back in a truly meaningful way to everyone in every community we serve.”

Founded in 1995 in Kingston, Ontario near Queen’s University, Pita Pit® is an innovative fast casual restaurant with a unique mindset that challenges consumers to Refuse to Settle™ for anything less than quality, healthy, freshly grilled food. After rapidly earning a loyal following in its home market, franchising began across Canada in 1997 and, in 1999, the brand expanded to the United States. Now boasting more than 650 stores across North America and internationally across 13 countries, Pita Pit offers its customers millions of ridiculously delicious, customizable flavour combinations of grilled meats, fresh vegetables, and zesty sauces all rolled into a unique and convenient pita package. For more information about Pita Pit, visit or

ABOUT motionball
motionball was founded by three best friends who happen to be brothers. Mark, Sean and Paul Etherington have been aligned with Special Olympics Canada since childhood when they volunteered at fundraising events organized by their parents, who co-founded the Sports Celebrities Festival, which has raised in excess of $25 million for Special Olympics Canada since 1983. Noticing a lack of integration between supporters and the athletes they support, Mark, Sean and Paul Etherington brought motionball to life in 2002. Throughout the course of the motionball calendar year more than 6,000 supporters and Special Olympics athletes participate in 18 annual events in CalgaryCharlottetownHalifaxHamiltonKelownaMontrealOttawaTorontoSaskatoonVancouverWinnipeg and Edmonton. motionball strives to encourage Canadians to come together and raise funds and awareness to ensure the long-term stability of the Special Olympics in Canada. For more information please visit: or