– Washington Capitals forwards Cody Eakin
, Marcus Johansson
and Mathieu Perreault
skated at the GEICO iceless rink at the Smithsonian National Zoo on Sunday, Dec. 11. The trio skated with 50 children from the Caps Kids Club from 7 to 7:30 p.m. and then skated with 50 children preselected by the Zoo from 7:30 to 8 p.m. This event was part of the National Zoo’s ZooLights, powered by Pepco.
Capitals mascot Slapshot was also in attendance and took photos prior to skating with the children.
None of the Capitals players had visited the National Zoo before, and they were treated to a behind-the-scenes private tour of the Great Cats exhibit before skating. Eakin, Johansson and Perreault had a chance to see all of the Zoo’s lions and tigers up close and learn more about the animals, their habits and how they are cared for by the staff.
“I was a little rattled when Luke [the adult male lion] started roaring and getting agitated,” said Perreault. “I was a little scared even though there was a fence between us. But it was definitely an amazing experience I will never forget.”
The Washington Capitals Kids Club, presented by Dasani, hosted a contest from Nov. 21-Dec. 2. Members were asked to submit a drawing of their favorite animal Rocking the Red at the National Zoo. For more information on Caps Kids Club, visit http://capitals.nhl.com/club/page.htm?id=59825.
The National Zoo randomly selected 50 children to skate with the Caps through a sweepstakes drawing during the first two weekends of ZooLights (Nov. 25-27 and Dec. 2-4). The 50 children selected are ages 5 to 14 years old.
ZooLights runs from 5 to 9 p.m. on weekends (Fridays through Sundays) Nov. 25-Dec. 11 and from 5 to 9 p.m. nightly from Dec. 16-Jan. 1 (except Dec. 24, 25 and 31). Entry to ZooLights is free and admission to the GEICO rink is $5 for a 30-minute session with skate rentals available for an additional $2 fee. The iceless rink is made of the world’s best and most eco-friendly synthetic ice skating surface, composed of specially engineered polymers that permit skate blades to glide as smoothly as on real ice. This “green” high-tech plastic ice is made from a non-toxic, recyclable acrylic material.
For more information on ZooLights, visit http://nationalzoo.si.edu/