Food, fun and fundraising were the themes on Monday night at the New York Islanders' Casino Night. The Islanders hosted their fifth annual Casino Night on Monday at Chateau Briand that helped raise over $200,000 for the Islanders Children's Foundation.
Instead of matching jerseys on Monday, the Islanders wore matching tuxedos, wheeling and dealing behind the blackjack tables and dishing out dice during craps games.
"Casino Night is a lot of fun," Josh Bailey said. "This event allows us some time to interact with some of our biggest supporters, while at the same time raising money for such a great cause."
Not only were there the casino games, but attendees had the chance to bid on high-end experiences including a road trip with the team and John Tavares' game-worn jersey from the 2017 NHL All-Star Game.
"Seeing the family's faces after they won the jersey was priceless," Tavares said. "You love to see passionate fans' excitement. It was a pleasure being able to meet them, sign the jersey and take a couple pictures with them."
Video: Islanders Casino Night
There were also silent and live auctions that gave the fans the chance to bid on individual player baskets that were put together by player and their wives/girlfriends. Fans who were lucky enough to win a basket left with golf packages, broadway tickets and dinner certificates to some of the best restaurants on Long Island. "Our fans offer a tremendous amount of support throughout the long season," Islanders Head Coach Doug Weight said. "We hear them through the good and the bad and are happy that we get this chance to show them we appreciate them and hear them cheering every game. It was a lot of fun tonight."
The food spread included pasta, sushi & steak as entrees, with assorted pastries and cakes for dessert. All proceeds from the event went to help the Islanders Children's Foundation, a New York State not-for-profit foundation dedicated to supporting the youth of the local community by providing opportunities to children.
While the fans and players had fun around the tables on Monday, the real winner were the children.