Goaltender Olie Kolzig is a co-founder of Athletes Against Autism, a group organized to raise awareness and funds for autism research, treatment and family support programs.
“I am extremely excited about Autism Awareness Night on Dec. 27,” said Kolzig, whose son, Carson, is autistic. “To be able to get the word out and raise some money for this baffling disorder is very important, not only in educating the general public but also in helping to find a cure.”
Autism Awareness Night will begin with a 3 p.m. game featuring special hockey players. When doors open at 6 p.m., the Capitals will host a silent auction at the community relations table on the concourse behind Section 104. The auction will benefit Athletes Against Autism and will feature game-used equipment such as an autographed Kolzig blocker and catching glove and an autographed Alex Ovechkin
stick and gloves.
The Capitals and Bruins face off at 7 p.m. and a special hockey scrimmage will be held between periods. A portion of the proceeds from all tickets purchased through http://tix.washingtoncapitals.com/cureautismnow
will be donated to Athletes Against Autism, Cure Autism Now and the American Special Hockey Association. The Capitals will also host a silent auction of hockey memorabilia on the concourse to benefit those groups. About Athletes Against Autism
Athletes Against Autism was founded by a group of athletes, touched by autism, who are harnessing their efforts into one voice in order to raise awareness and funds for autism research, treatment and family support programs. For more information about Athletes Against Autism, visit www.athletesagainstautism.org
. About Cure Autism Now
Cure Autism Now is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting and funding autism research and accelerating the pace of scientific progress toward effective treatments and a cure for autism. The organization is one of the leading private funders of biomedical research in autism, providing more than $25 million for research grants, education, outreach and scientific resources, including the establishment and ongoing support of the Autism Genetic Resource Exchange (AGRE). Cure Autism Now has chapters in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Hawaii, Houston, Los Angeles, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Orange County, Orlando, Philadelphia, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington D.C./Baltimore. For more information about Cure Autism Now, visit www.cureautismnow.org
. About American Special Hockey Association
Special Hockey exists for the enrichment of the athlete with a developmental disability. In addition to physical hockey skills, the program emphasizes the development of desirable individual characteristics such as dependability, self-reliance, concentration, willingness to share and personal accountability. The game of hockey is used by Special Hockey to develop within each player the characteristics that will help the player to be more successful both inside and outside a hockey environment. For more information about American Special Hockey Association, visit www.americanspecialhockey.org
. About Autism
Autism is a neuro-developmental disorder that now affects an estimated one in every 166 children in the United States. Autism is commonly diagnosed by the age three, and in some cases, as early as one year. Characterized by varying degrees of impairment in communication skills, social interactions, and restricted, repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behavior, children with autism can exhibit symptoms that run from mild to severe with widely differing symptom profiles.