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Red Wings recognize Thursday as Hockey Fights Cancer Night presented by Van Andel Institute - Purple Community

by Christy Hammond / Detroit Red Wings
DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings will host Hockey Fights Cancer Night, presented by Van Andel Institute’s Purple Community on Thursday, Oct. 23, when the Wings host the Pittsburgh Penguins at 7:30 p.m. (FOX Sports Detroit & 97.1 The Ticket).

All 30 NHL teams will host a Hockey Fights Cancer Night, however the Red Wings are one of only seven teams that will celebrate their Hockey Fights Cancer Night game with all-lavender dasherboards, which is the color that represents awareness for all forms of cancer. Fans are encouraged to wear purple to Thursday’s game to support cancer awareness.

All fans in attendance for Hockey Fights Cancer Night will receive a My Purple Is card, courtesy of Van Andel Institute. During a stoppage in the game, fans will be encouraged to stand and hold up their My Purple Is card to recognize someone in their life who has been affected by cancer. Fans in attendance will also receive a purple rally towel, courtesy of Meijer and Coke Zero.

Upper-level seats are on sale for Hockey Fights Cancer Night for $40 or $55. One hundred percent of the proceeds from each ticket sold through this special offer will be donated back to Van Andel Institute, where their research center helps to develop treatments and therapies for cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. Tickets for the game can be purchased by visiting and entering the promo code “PURPLE.”

Other Hockey Fights Cancer Activities
  • Red Wings will hold a bone marrow registration drive done in partnership with Delete Blood Cancer DKMS behind Section 126 on the concourse. By doing a quick cheek swab, fans will have the opportunity to be added to the Be The Match Registry®.
  • Each player will use lavender hockey tape on their stick during pregame warm-ups that will then be auctioned off the following week on
  • Fans will be asked to write the name of someone they know who has been impacted by cancer on a My Purple Is sign, courtesy of Van Andel Institute, and then hold up the sign at the second TV timeout following the 10-minute mark of the first period to celebrate cancer survivors in their lives.
  • The Red Wings will host 20 cancer patients and survivors representing 20 different types of cancer.
  • Captain Henrik Zetterberg will welcome pediatric cancer patients at Children’s Hospital of Michigan along with their families in the Zetterberg Foundation Suite.
  • A portion of the Detroit Red Wings Foundation’s 50/50 raffle on Saturday will benefit Van Andel Institute.
  • Earlier in the day, the Red Wings will host local cancer patients and survivors along with their guests at the team’s morning skate practice.
  • The Powerhouse Gym Budd Lynch Veterans Suite will host 10 military members who are cancer patients and survivors, plus a guest.
  • A majority of the game-day experiences, including the Youth Skater of the Game, Zamboni rides, Score-O and pregame penalty box visits, will feature cancer patients and survivors who are attending the game.

The event is part of the annual Hockey Fights Cancer Awareness Month, an initiative founded by the NHL and NHLPA in December 1998 to raise money and awareness for hockey’s most important fight. To date, more than $12.8 million has been raised under the Hockey Fights Cancer initiative to support national and local cancer research institutions, children’s hospitals, player charities and local cancer organizations.

Van Andel Institute (VAI) is a biomedical research and science education organization based in Grand Rapids, Mich. VAI has more than 200 scientists studying over a dozen different types of cancer. Purple Community is VAI’s grassroots fundraising initiative. Thanks to the efforts of students, businesses and community members, more than $1 million has already been generated for cancer and neurodegenerative research. Fans can learn more about the work at VAI and Purple Community on the concourse and throughout the game.

About Van Andel Institute:

Established by Jay and Betty Van Andel in 1996, Van Andel Institute is an independent research organization dedicated to preserving, enhancing and expanding the frontiers of medical science, and to achieving excellence in education by probing fundamental issues of education and the learning process. This is accomplished through the work of over 200 researchers in more than 20 on-site laboratories and in collaborative partnerships that span the globe. Find out more about Van Andel Institute by visiting 100% to Research, Discovery & Hope®.

About Purple Community:

Purple Community is Van Andel Institute’s dynamic community engagement program that connects individuals, schools, teams, companies and corporations that want to join the fight against cancer and neurodegenerative diseases to the resources needed for action. Individualized tools and customized assistance are available to create events and programs that help raise funds for biomedical research and science education at Van Andel Institute. Begun in 2009, Purple Community is expanding nationally, with more than 160 events scheduled in 2014. The program recently surpassed the $1 million mark in donations. Thanks to a generous endowment from Jay and Betty Van Andel, every dollar of every donation goes directly to the cause. Find out more about Purple Community by visiting 100% To Research, Discovery & Hope®.

About The Detroit Red Wings:

The Detroit Red Wings hockey club, an Original Six member of the National Hockey League and 11-time Stanley Cup Champion, was purchased by Michael and Marian Ilitch in 1982. Other Ilitch companies in the food, sports and entertainment industries include: Little Caesars Pizza, Blue Line Foodservice Distribution, Ilitch Holdings, Inc., Olympia Entertainment, Olympia Development of Michigan, Little Caesars Pizza Kit Fundraising Program, Champion Foods and Uptown Entertainment. Michael Ilitch owns the Detroit Tigers. Marian Ilitch owns the MotorCity Casino Hotel. For more information, visit

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