For over two decades the Toronto Maple Leafs have supported Easter Seal Kids through the annual Maple Leaf Skate. On November 18 Leaf players strapped on their skates once again for the cause as kids lined up in droves to partake in the annual TD Toronto Maple Leafs Skate for Easter Seals Kids which took place at Air Canada Centre.
| Many fans joined Mikael Renberg and the Leafs for a fundraising skate at Air Canada Centre. |
Bryan McCabe, Mikael Renberg, Darcy Tucker, Mats Sundin and Curtis Joseph were just a few of the team members who came out to the event that benefits more than 8,000 families across Ontario. To the delight of the thousands of fans in attendance, the Leafs were more than willing to sign autographs and pose for pictures throughout the afternoon.
"The Leafs have been involved with us for many years. They've been a great support to our charity and the kids that we support," said event coordinator, Jennifer Ward of the Easter Seals Society of Ontario.
Each year the event is divided into two sections. The Ultimate Skate is for those participants who raised a minimum of $700 in pledges. Their 'ultimate' day includes a tour of the Leaf dressing room and breakfast at the Air Canada Club not to mention a skate with the Leafs. The second half of the event is the Public Skate for those participants raising a minimum of $50 in pledges. Their fun-filled day includes the skate, lunch and great games and giveaways.
"The kids love it! Skating with and meeting the Maple Leafs is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," said Ward.
The fundraising at this year's event is expected to match last year's total at $230,000 with funds raised going to help children and young adults with physical disabilities via the Easter Seals Society of Ontario.