SUNRISE, Fla. – Sunrise Sports & Entertainment and the Florida Panthers announced today the formation of 'Stanley's incredible FRIENDS' – a unique new game presentation initiative for the 2006-07 Panthers season.
Stanley C. Panther and his incredible FRIENDS are a brand new group of hockey themed mascots – an alligator, flamingo, parrot, ibis and young panther – that will perform on the Spirit Airlines Funway and take part in other facets of the game presentation. All of Stanley's incredible FRIENDS – Clancy Panther, Art R. Alligator, Lady Byng and Maurice "The Rocket" McCaw – are named after National Hockey League Awards, save for Cammi the Ibis, who is named after US Women's Olympian Cammi Granato. Stanley's incredible FRIENDS will make their debut appearance on Opening Night Oct. 6 when the Panthers Drop That Puck against the Boston Bruins.
"Stanley's incredible FRIENDS are a fantastic addition to the game presentation for Florida Panthers home games," said Fan Development Manager Phil Crowhurst. "Never before has a franchise made such a concerted effort to integrate their mascot into pre-game festivities and in-game presentation. Furthermore, the formation and development of a whole team of mascots is absolutely unprecedented in professional sports."
"Stanley's incredible FRIENDS are the perfect medium to cater to our youth and family audience," SSE chief operating officer Michael Yormark said. "They also represent a new emphasis that we have placed on the entire BankAtlantic Center and Florida Panthers experience."
Showtime for Stanley's incredible FRIENDS is 6 pm. The festivities start with a dancing performance from Stanley and his friends on the Spirit Airlines Funway. Once doors open (6:30 pm for a 7:30 pm face-off) some lucky fans may also have the opportunity to eat dinner with the mascots in the Chairman's Club, while all fans can meet and greet the characters in the BankAtlantic Center food courts during intermission.
Stanley and his cast of characters will also be available for special appearances at local schools, for bar-mitzvah's, birthday parties and corporate functions.
For more information on Stanley's incredible FRIENDS and guest appearance booking information, call 954-835-7728 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Stanley's incredible Friends are...
Clancy Panther – Wants nothing better than to be as funny and entertaining as his long time idol, Stanley C. Panther. Often seen cheering for crowds at local youth hockey games, Clancy will take what Stanley does for the crowds at the BankAtlantic Center and try them at local ice rinks, often with limited success. But hey, he tries.
Clancy was named for the King Clancy Memorial Trophy, the annual award given to the player who best exemplifies leadership qualities on and off the ice and has made a noteworthy humanitarian contribution in his community. The Clancy Trophy was presented to the National Hockey League by the Board of Governors in 1988 to honor the late Frank "King" Clancy.
Art R. Alligator – Always a ladies man, Art and Stanley met while he and his pal Maurice "the Rocket" McCaw were performing at a local bar-mitzvah. Art has used his height and smooth touch to woo crowds into a fury on the dance floor. A graduate of the University of Florida, Art is looking forward to bringing his patented style to the BankAtlantic Center for games.
Art was named by his parents for the Art Ross Trophy, an annual award given to the player who leads the League in regular season scoring. Arthur Howie Ross, former manager-coach of the Boston Bruins, presented the trophy to the National Hockey League in 1947.
Maurice "the Rocket" McCaw – Maurice has been performing with Art for a number of years. The two met while he was performing in front of Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville in Key West.
The Maurice Richard Trophy is an annual award given to the National Hockey League's top goal scorer by the NHL Board of Governors. Winners are selected based on regular-season play. The Maurice Richard Trophy, officially unveiled on Jan. 24, 1999, was a gift to the NHL from the Canadiens to honor the first player in League history to score 50 goals in 50 games, 50 goals in a season and 500 in a career.
Lady Byng –Lady Byng enjoys spending her time lounging in the sun on Miami's South Beach. It was here she met her lifelong friend, Cammi G. Since then they've spent every day hanging out and working at a local pre-school entertaining the children. Lady Byng's family fell in love with the Panthers during their Stanley Cup run at the Miami Arena and still goes to games when they can. Even though she is one of the most beautiful flamingos on the beach, she's the nicest thing ever, always willing to lend a hand when needed.
Her family named her after the the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy, the annual award given to the player adjudged to have exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability. The winner is selected in a poll of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association at the end of the regular season. Lady Byng, wife of Canada's Governor-General at the time, presented the Lady Byng trophy in 1925. After Frank Boucher of the New York Rangers won the award seven times in eight seasons, he was given the trophy to keep and Lady Byng donated another trophy in 1936.
Cammi the Ibis - They say this ibis is the last bird to leave the beach before a hurricane, and Cammi is no exception. A great friend and counterpart to her pal Lady Bing, Cammi has always enjoyed putting smiles on people's faces. Though not as glamorous as her flamingo friend, Cammi never fails to turn heads with her dancing and style.
Cammi's parents decided to name her after the Captain of the USA's women's Olympic Hockey team – Cammi Granato – after seeing her carry the flag for the US team in the 1998 Winter Olympics closing ceremonies. Cammi, like her hockey playing namesake, is gaining a name for herself working with children in the area.