BY TYLER MILLIKEN // Nov. 16, 2016 //
The holiday season is all about giving, and the hockey team here at Curry is ready to get into the spirit.
On Saturday, November 19th, the Colonels will be hosting their third annual Teddy Bear Toss event. The hockey team will be facing off against Johnson and Wales University on the ice, and the puck is scheduled to drop at 4:45 p.m. at the Max Ulin Rink in Milton, Mass.
Over the past two seasons, the Teddy Bear Toss has been one of the biggest games for students and fans to attend. Giving the opportunity for both athletes and supporters of the team to get involved in such a great cause is something nobody wants to miss out on.
“It’s a great community builder, we bring in the Curry students, athletes, and Milton community while hopefully trying to do a lot of good,” Head Coach T.J. Manastersky explained.
In order for this event to come together successfully, the hockey team has been partnering with TEAM Impact. This organization allows children with chronic and possibly life-threatening diseases, to become a member of different sports teams at various Colleges in the area.
Through a draft process, these students are matched with different teams, and they stay connected with them until graduation. It’s a way for the child to get involved, while also having their new teammates join their ever-growing support team.
When the Colonels score their first goal of the game on Saturday, fans will have the chance to throw teddy bears onto the ice. It’s a rare thing to see in sports, but it’s something nobody seems to forget.
Once all the teddy bears hit the ice, they’re collected and then donated to different charities with the help of TEAM Impact.
Spectators in attendance have the option to either bring their own teddy bear to be donated or buy one at the door. Supplies are limited, though, so it’s important to arrive early if you want to contribute to the cause.
Last year’s event totaled somewhere between 300-400 donated teddy bears, so the Colonels will be looking for help to surpass that number this time around.
Sophomore defenseman Mack Heisinger talked a little bit about the experience as a whole, saying, “For us all, it brings a sense of joy, because we’re doing something we love. And at the same time, we’re able to help a bunch of kids out by donating these bears. Having an entire community rally around that on one night is pretty special for us.”
Junior forward Ryan Fitzgerald added, “There’s an extra sense of excitement to know this is something that’s going to happen every year, and the legacy will live on many years after we leave here. There’s something of a rewarding feeling about that that really lives inside all of us.”
Heisinger went on to add that, “As a team, when we come together and find our schedule, the Teddy Bear Toss is one of the games we always circle.”
If you would like to make a contribution before that circled game, members of the hockey team will be selling t-shirts and bracelets from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday in the Student Center. The extra money will be donated from the sales, so it’s another way to get the Curry Community involved ahead of the big game on Saturday.