Since the start of the 2014-15 season, employees in the front office of the Nashville Predators and Bridgestone Arena have donated more than 3,000 hours of their time to non-profits in Middle Tennessee. These volunteer hours come in addition to the countless hours throughout the season that Nashville Predators players and coaching staff are spotted in the community – helping bake cookies at Ronald McDonald House, visiting patients at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital, stopping in to play a game of street hockey at a YMCA and more.
“It’s important for our staff members to be involved in the community because it gives us an opportunity to give back to the community that supports us year round – whether that’s for concerts or hockey games,” Preds Community Relations Coordinator Snow Rose said.
Staff from the Predators and Bridgestone Arena take on a variety of projects throughout the year – including walking dogs at the Nashville Humane Society, playing basketball at Youth Villages, assisting with youth hockey practices and dozens of other opportunities.
This Friday alone, nearly 100 employees of the Preds and Bridgestone Arena will sort food at Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee, package diapers with Diaper Connection, assemble school supplies with LP PENCIL Box, register runners for Nashville’s Color Run - just to name a few. All of these projects are part of an opportunity to get out into the community during a morning of service set aside by the organization prior to the Memorial Day holiday weekend.
“It’s important that if you have the opportunity to give back, you do so,” Preds Corporate Partnerships Account Services Manager Jordan Wright said. “Whether that’s in your free time or company time, helping out in any way you can is important, especially when you’re able to use your platform.”
Kerry Conley, Program Manager at the PENCIL Foundation’s LP PENCIL Box, an organization that provides classroom supplies free of charge to Metro school teachers, started working with the Predators Foundation last summer when an email asking if there were open volunteer opportunities began a partnership that has since brought both Preds players and staff to serve at the facility.
“Every Predators staff member that has volunteered with LP PENCIL Box has gone above and beyond,” Conley said. “I couldn’t serve MNPS [Metro Nashville Public Schools] teachers and students without volunteers. Words do not do justice for how grateful I am for the Predators Foundation and staff that continually volunteer their time.”
While some of the jobs the staff members take on utilize just a handful of people, some, like the annual KaBoom! playground build, require the strength of an entire office behind it and with that, leave a lasting impression on all involved.
“It’s a good experience to work with your coworkers outside of the confines of the building,” Rose said. “At KaBoom!, you’re getting the opportunity to build playgrounds for kids who may not otherwise have an opportunity to get out and play, and you’re getting to spend time with your coworkers and see what else they’re good at – whether it’s building benches or painting.”
Building. Painting. Sorting. Registering. Delivering. Gardening. Walking. They’re all fair game when the Preds staff are out volunteering.
“Anywhere we can help,” Rose said. “We have many talents that can be put to use.”
Be sure to follow the Preds on Twitter (@PredsNHL) and “like” the team on Facebook (Nashville Predators Hockey Team) to get a behind-the-scenes look at the Nashville Predators in the community – from Friday’s staff volunteer day to the Preds Development Camp Community Day later in the summer and more.