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NHL team holiday initiatives

Wednesday, 12.23.2009 / 3:27 PM / NHL Community

NHL.com

The Holiday season is a time for giving and sharing, and the 30 NHL member teams are doing their part to spread cheer throughout their respective communities. Find out how your favorite team is giving back to the fans:

ANAHEIM DUCKS

Dec. 14: Third annual George Parros Cut for the Kids, where the right winger cuts his hair to donate to nonprofits that provide children with wigs to aid in their fight against cancer; more than $2,500 was raised for the Childhood Leukemia Foundation

ATLANTA THRASHERS

Dec. 3, 12, 17, 19: Toys for Tots donation nights in conjunction with Kia Motors, Applebee's and the U.S. Marine Corps

BOSTON BRUINS

Dec. 8: Players went shopping at Target (out of their own pockets) for the team's annual Holiday Toy Shopping event; toys were then delivered on Dec. 15 to children who were unable to celebrate the holidays at home (Patrice Bergeron, Zdeno Chara, David Krejci, Milan Lucic, Marc Savard and Tim Thomas made the deliveries)

BUFFALO SABRES

Dec. 9, 11, 18, 19: Winter Clothing Drive to benefit Buffalo City Mission

CALGARY FLAMES

Dec. 9, 11: Flames Better Halves sold Christmas tree, ornaments and stockings, benefitting the Flames Foundation for Life

CAROLINA HURRICANES

Dec. 21, 23: Food Drive Night presented by Harris Teeter to benefit the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina

CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS

Dec. 6: For the second straight year, Brent Sopel and his wife Kelly supported Operation Homefront with a holiday party at their house; six Hawks teammates also purchased gift baskets and attended the party, which hosted 15 military families

COLORADO AVALANCHE

Dec. 8: Kroenke Sports Enterprises employees volunteer at 12 local organizations in lieu of staff holiday party

COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS

Dec. 8: Hockey Holidays – Steve Mason attended Arlington Park Elementary School's holiday party and practice visit at Nationwide Arena; Mike Commodore visited Easter Seals Life Skills Center

DALLAS STARS

Dec. 22: Third annual Jingle Jet trip, which provides five area families in need with a holiday of their dreams; each family flies to the "North Pole" on the Dallas Stars' private jet and has a designated Christmas tree surrounded by wrapped presents

DETROIT RED WINGS

Dec. 14: Red Wings holiday ornament giveaway

EDMONTON OILERS

Dec. 19: In-game Ornaments of Hope sale

FLORIDA PANTHERS

Nov. 24: Panthers players and employees, along with GM Randy Sexton and Co-Managing Partner and CEO Stu Siegel, gave out $10,000 worth of Thanksgiving meals for over 750 underprivileged families at the Cooperative Feeding Center of Broward County

LOS ANGELES KINGS

Dec. 3, 5, 7, 10, 12: Annual toy drive at STAPLES Center benefitting a myriad of youth based organizations

MONTREAL CANADIENS

Dec. 10: Brian Gionta and Michael Cammalleri visit paralyzed midget player at Montreal Children's Hospital

MINNESOTA WILD

Dec. 21: Minnesota Wild "Better Halves" Signed Holiday Ornaments Silent Auction

NASHVILLE PREDATORS

Dec. 4: Distributed 1,000 ticket vouchers to military families to attend an upcoming home game free of charge as part of Operation Homefront
 
NEW JERSEY DEVILS

Dec. 4: Annual Toys for Tots collection in conjunction with the U.S. Marine Corps

NEW YORK ISLANDERS

Dec. 19: Toy Drive/Teddy Bear Toss in partnership with the John Theissen Foundation; Holiday Ornament Auction to benefit the Islanders Children's Foundation

NEW YORK RANGERS

Dec. 16: Garden of Dreams Adopt-A-Family Gift Delivery

OTTAWA SENATORS

Dec. 6: For the sixth consecutive year, owner Eugene Melnyk hosted more than 100 diverse children, as selected by Child and Youth Friendly Ottawa (CAYFO), at his Skate for Kids event at Scotiabank Place and gave each Christmas gifts

PHILADELPHIA FLYERS

Dec. 5: Construction of enormous "Toy Mountain" at Wachovia Center, featuring more than 10,000 toys, benefitting the Child Abuse Prevention Effort (CAPE); toy donation later that night at Flyers game

PHOENIX COYOTES

Dec. 12: Team hosted second "Dollar Drive" to benefit Sanderson Ford's Operation Santa Claus
 
PITTSBURGH PENGUINS

Dec. 11-18:
Pittsburgh Penguins Wives Association sells holiday baskets (unique to each player, coach or executive), with all proceeds from the online auction benefitting The Children's Institute of Pittsburgh and helping fund programs for children in need

SAN JOSE SHARKS

Dec. 11, 17: Holiday Jersey sale

ST. LOUIS BLUES

Dec. 11, 18: Festival of Trees – bid on 4-foot holiday trees decorated by Blues players and their families

TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING

Dec. 23: Lightning wives and girlfriends sell holiday ornaments they decorated to benefit the Lightning Foundation's Annual Grant Program

TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS

Dec. 17: Toy Drop-Off at Sick Kids Hospital
 
VANCOUVER CANUCKS

Dec. 8: Fourth annual Canucks Family Education Centre Holiday Dinner; Canucks wives and significant others, in partnership with Aramark, hosted over 200 families to spread the joy of the season

WASHINGTON CAPITALS

Dec. 27: Team will host 25 families at a skating and pizza party at Kettler Capitals Iceplex, where Capitals players and wives will get a chance to meet the kids they shopped for on Nov. 17



Quote of the Day

It's a little different but it feels amazing. A new chapter in my life and I'm excited. It's been amazing. Better than I expected. The weather is great, the place is just amazing. I can't say enough good things about it. I'm glad to get the season going.

— Ryan Kesler on his transition to the Anaheim Ducks