The Canadian Cancer Society’s fundraising evening offers a host of special activities to honor those affected
It was only fitting that the largest crowd to witness a Moose Jaw Warriors game at Mosaic Place since the start of the pandemic filled the stands on Hockey Fights Cancer Night.
More than 3,500 fans filled the arena for Saturday’s game against the Regina Pats, with a myriad of activities raising money for the Canadian Cancer Society.
And with how things turned out, it made all the hard work preparing for the evening well worth it — especially considering the emotional impact for everyone involved.
“This event, there’s a lot of work going into it and our staff has worked so hard to bring it together, back to July and August and a lot of planning,” said Warriors director of operations Jaret Schneider. “It was a great night, we had a lot of support from the public. When it’s a Regina game and Hockey Fights Cancer, you put those two together and you get one of the best nights of the year, so it was fantastic.”
The purple-and-purple color of the Canadian Cancer Society was the main theme of the evening and was reflected in the Warriors’ jerseys, the lighting of the arena and many of the events that took place.
Fans were able to purchase “I Fight For” signs displayed in the hall during the game, a silent auction was held for jerseys worn by the game and a chuck-a-puck for a team-signed Hockey Fights Cancer Jersey. in the second break and fans were able to sign the ice after the game in honor of their loved ones.
But beyond the activities themselves, it was about honoring those lost and affected by cancer — including the Warriors themselves, with a pre-game video giving players and staff the chance to talk about their experiences with the disease. .
“That’s the thing about cancer,” Schneider said. “It’s not just one person, it’s not just one team, it’s everyone, it really is. It’s us, it’s the Pats, it’s the fans in the building, everyone has cancer. So it’s nice to be able to put together something that touches everyone’s heart a little. It’s great to see it all come together and people are enjoying it and supporting it.”
A major highlight was the Warriors jerseys themselves. In addition to their unique color, the back of each jersey featured fan-submitted photos, which were mosaic formatted into the player numbers, with a very impressive end result.
“It was something we thought about this summer, it was ‘can we really do this?’ and it turned out so well,” said Schneider. “We had submissions from our entire fanbase and it turned out better than I imagined, an inch-by-inch photo sublimated into a jersey. They turned out amazing and we couldn’t be happier.”
All told, the evening promised to raise thousands of dollars for the Canadian Cancer Society’s Saskatchewan division, something the team is certainly proud of.
“It’s hard to say exactly what the final song will be, but it’s going to be a big night for them and for us too,” said Schneider. “With the success of our evening and how things have turned out, we really hope other teams jump on board and plan something similar to help and we look forward to seeing what they do.”
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