Good morning and welcome to "Cats & Coffee," a weekly segment, presented byKoffee Kult, in which we serve up an exciting look at what's on deck for your Florida Panthers. Like our friends at Koffee Kult, this forecast serves up only the best -- so sit back, sip and enjoy our latest brew of news, notes and information!
The Florida Panthers second-annual Summer Reading Tour will wrap up this week.
In conjunction with Broward County Libraries, the Panthers have already made nine stops on their tour, with guest readers, games and more bringing smiles to local children each time. On Wednesday, the final reading of the summer will be taking place at Young Art Library in Davie.
The event is scheduled to run from 2-5 p.m. and will feature another surprise reader.
From radio and television broadcasters like Randy Moller, Steve Goldstein and Doug Plagens, to current Panthers players such as forward Jayce Hawryluk and defenseman Aaron Ekblad, this year's tour has already welcomed a wealth of readers from all around the hockey world.
"I was very excited to get to do this again," said Ekblad, who also read at last year's tour. "It's always nice to come out and do something like this. As a kid, I remember being excited for things like this, no matter who it was that came out. Whether it was a hockey player or a doctor coming to read to you, it was always fun. It's always cool to learn, especially when you're a kid."
Video: 2019 Florida Panthers Reading Tour: Aaron Ekblad
For more information regarding the tour, please visit FloridaPanthers.com/ReadingTour.
WIN A TRIP TO THE BOX
If you want to get sent to the penalty box, it's much easier to enter a contest than trip a guy.
With the 2019-20 preseason right around the corner, the Panthers recently unveiled a brand-new contest aimed to give some lucky fans a chance to get as close to the action as possible.
By entering in the "Two-Minute Minor Contest," you and three of your best friends will have a chance to not only win four free tickets to Florida's preseason game against the Tampa Bay Lightning at BB&T Center on Sept. 26, but also a prime location in the sin bin for warm-ups.
Additionally, the winner will also receive a pennant signed by the team's 2019 free agent class.
To enter the contest, click HERE.
THE NEXT GENERATION
If your kids have a passion for hockey, the Panthers want to help get them on the ice.
In conjunction with the NHL, NHLPA and USA Hockey, the Panthers will soon begin new "Learn To Play" sessions at local rinks for boys and girls ages 5-9. All registrants must be first time ice hockey participants and have never been registered with USA hockey prior to taking the course.
Introducing the game to children at a reduce cost, the "Learn to Play" program was designed to tear down some of the traditional financial barriers that have kept families away from the ice in the past. For just $175, all participants receive a full set of equipment (skates, pads, etc.) and six weeks of on-ice training with Florida Panthers Alumni and USA Hockey Certified Coaches.
For more information and to find a rink near you that offers the program, please visit FloridaPanthers.com/LearnToPlay.
TIME TO GET YOUR TICKETS
It's time to start securing your seats for what should be a thrilling 2019-20 season.
With just over two months to go until the Panthers open up their highly-anticipated campaign against the cross-state rival Lightning on Oct. 3 in Tampa Bay, everything from groups and suites to season and single-game ticket packages for all 82 games are currently on sale now.
And while all of those options are great, full season tickets do come with the following perks:
• Exclusive Concession Pricing on Select Items
• 25% Merchandise Discount in Pantherland
• Discounted General Parking
• Priority Access to BB&T Center Concerts and Events
• Exclusive Season Ticket Holder Events
As I said before, this is a season you're not going to want to miss!
For ticket information, click HERE to find our more info or call 954-835 PUCK (7825)!
CATS CLIP OF THE WEEK
What could Florida's lineup look like on opening night?
NHL Network recently took at a swing at it.
Video: Looking at the potential for the Panthers
CATS IN THE COMMUNITY
TERRITORY TALK After penning that he was officially hopping on the Panthers bandwagon, NHL.com senior writer Dan Rosen joined last week's episode of Territory Talk to share why he believes playoff hockey will soon be returning to South Florida. Also, FOX Sports Florida's Jessica Blaylock joined Doug Plagens and Jameson Olive in studio to talk about the team, interesting tattoos ideas and more! COLD COFFEE (IN CASE YOU MISSED IT)
-- Twins Brandon and Bryan are stepping into the world of sports with Panthers internships.
-- It's only August, but Aaron Ekblad is already ramping up his training for the 2019-20 season.
-- From two Vezina Trophies to five 30-win seasons, take a look at what the numbers tell us about new Panthers goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky.
-- Denis Potvin, a Hall of Fame defenseman and longtime Panthers broadcaster, is retiring.
-- Randy Moller has been named Fox Sports Florida's Television Color Analyst for the Cats
-- Following Denis Potvin's retirement from broadcasting, Randy Moller penned a heartfelt tribute to the man that helped him get started in the business more than two decades ago.
-- If you missed last week's #WallpaperWednesday, you missed some of the best.