TAMPA BAY – For the 14th consecutive season, the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Lightning Foundation have teamed up with community leader Steve Yerrid and The Yerrid Foundation to roll out the yellow carpet for Tampa Bay Fights Cancer Night.
As in years past, the theme of Tampa Bay Fights Cancer Night will help raise awareness in support of finding a cure for the disease, as well as spread the message that courage, strength and love can build bridges to a better tomorrow. This centerpiece event involves a matchup between the Lightning and the Calgary Flames on Thursday, April 3 in which more than 2,000 individuals affected by the disease or helping to find a cure in Tampa Bay will be invited to enjoy the game. The annual event brings together a multitude of charitable organizations dedicated to dealing with the dreaded disease.
"Tampa Bay Fights Cancer Night continues to be one of the highlights of the Lightning schedule, as it has been for the previous 13 seasons," Lightning chief executive officer Tod Leiweke said. "Once again it is our honor to welcome these great heroes to the Tampa Bay Times Forum for a night in which they can take a break from the battle against this brutal disease. On behalf of the Lightning organization and the entire Tampa Bay community we would like to thank Steve Yerrid for his generosity and resolve in the fight against cancer."
"Together with the Lightning, we have established one of the key note annual events for the cancer community in the Bay Area," Yerrid said. "Everyone involved in this event is united in the fight against a horrific disease that touches so many of our loved ones. In hosting this event, as we do every year, we hope to provide awareness of the battle that so many in our community are involved in and give them a break, if only for a night. The entire Lightning organization has been tremendous in supporting our common cause. We will never quit until we find a cure.
"I am particularly pleased to have formed friendships with Jeff Vinik and Tod Leiweke, and I am 100 percent certain these men care deeply about doing good in our community. I look forward to our continued partnership and the future ahead."
"Steve Yerrid, the Yerrid Foundation and the Tampa Bay Lightning truly create such an eipc, one-of-a-kind night, year-after-year, for our fighters and heroes," said executive director of the 1Voice Foundation Mary Ann Massolio. "This is truly a special night and our families look forward to it every year and feel special when they see the magnitude of love and support that Tampa Bay Fights Cancer Night provides."
To date, close to 80,000 cancer patients, survivors, caregivers, families, doctors, nurses and volunteers have participated in Tampa Bay Fights Cancer Night activities. With the goal of bringing the cause to the forefront of the community's awareness, The Yerrid Foundation and the Lightning Foundation have teamed up to provide tickets and t-shirts to all participants, as well as food vouchers to all children from the organizations.
Special guests from the participating organizations will also be able to sit in the penalty box for the pregame warm up, set off the Tesla Coils during the game, ride the Sweetbay Fan Zamboni and enjoy meet-and-greets with Lightning players, visits to the radio and television broadcast booths and other activities on Ford Thunder Alley.
Three individuals will also be designated as "Yerrid's Heroes" for the night. The designations of Yerrid's Heroes each year go to local champions in the "cancer community". Those represented will be an outstanding doctor, a volunteer and a current patient fighting their personal battles with the disease. These incredible individuals will be recognized in-game and wear a "Yerrid's Heroes" jersey for the night.
Special Tampa Fights Cancer Night memory cards will be sold at Bolts Social Central behind section 128 where fans can honor their own personal heroes in the battle against this disease and participate in our virtual memory wall by using #TampaBayFightsCancer. Fans can also stop by Bolts Social Central to make social posts for the evening and receive a special yellow Tampa Bay Fights Cancer bracelet.