Mooseheads lend support to 13th Annual DND Appreciation Night
By Ryan Melanson,
The Halifax Mooseheads weren’t able to pull off the win, but they still entertained the crowd of 7,680 and helped raise money for a great cause at the 13th Annual DND Appreciation Night, held on January 20 at the Scotiabank Centre. The Mooseheads took on the Baie-Comeau Drakkar, falling short 7-4 in a high-scoring affair that gave the fans plenty of action to take in.
As always, the Halifax squad wore special CAF-inspired jerseys for the day, and fans purchased raffle tickets for a chance to walk away with one of the limited-edition jerseys after the game. A few jerseys were held back to be auctioned off at a later date, including the #13 worn by Mooseheads standout and top NHL prospect Nico Hischier. This year’s jersey also included the Canada 150 logo, said Missy Sonier, PSP Halifax Corporate Sponsorship Manager.
“The front of the jersey was, of course, our Canadian Armed Forces Crest, but the back also highlighted the 150th Anniversary of Confederation,” along with the PSP and Canadian Hockey League logos.
The 2017 game marked the 13th year for the partnership between DND, the Halifax Mooseheads and the Camp Hill Veterans Memorial Building. Since the very first DND Appreciation Night in 2004, more than $130,000 has been raised in support of the Camp HIll Memorial Garden, and with nearly $17,000 raised already from raffle ticket sales at this year’s game, plus more to come from online jersey auctions, the total is likely to push toward $150,000 once tallied up.
“It’s a partnership that we’re extremely proud and one that’s important to us,” said Brian Urquhart, Vice President of Business Operations with the Mooseheads. The connection to Camp Hill is a longstanding one, and he said the team was thrilled to be able to visit the veterans at the facility with the Memorial Cup in 2013. But he said the players and fans also enjoy seeing all the currently serving CAF members taking in the game or selling raffle tickets around the rink.
“Our city obviously a has a major connection to the Armed Forces and the team is no different. We love having them here and we want to spread that message of the sacrifice and commitments that the members make for our country.”
RAdm Newton, Commander MARLANT and JTFA, was on hand to help kick off the game, going on the ice for the ceremonial puck drop along with Korean War veteran and Camp Hill resident CPO R.J. “Tug” Wilson. RAdm Newton said it was a fitting partnership to see the CAF honoured and supported by a sport as Canadian as hockey.
“There’s nobody that appreciates teamwork and professionalism and fitness and excellence more than a military team, and there’s nobody who appreciates the support of the community more than the Canadian Armed Forces and all of our civilian workers.”
Organizers also wished to give a special thanks to the Scotiabank Centre and Trade Centre Ltd. for the donation of skyboxes for DND guests, as well as Centreplate Catering for the food generously provided to the skyboxes and volunteers, as well as to all those from the Army, RCAF and RCN who gave up their time to sell raffle tickets and help in other ways to ensure another successful night.