The Checkers completed their inaugural season in the American Hockey League in giving fashion, raising more than $335,000 for local charities and non-profit organizations. The team has now raised $2 million since Michael Kahn took ownership of the ECHL Checkers in 2006.
The following events highlighted the season-long donation campaign:
Race Night - $20,500
The fifth annual AutoTrader.com Race Night involved a post-game jersey auction with proceeds benefiting Zach Bennett.
Pink in the Rink - $26,189
The fifth annual Pink in the Rink was held on March 12th. The Checkers donned specialty pink jerseys and auctioned them live following the game. Proceeds from the auction and a portion of ticket sales were donated to Carolina Breast Friends for the “Pink House,” a sanctuary for breast cancer survivors.
Salute to Heroes - $28,000+
On April 9th, the Checkers held the Sixth annual Salute to Heroes, presented by AutoTrader.com. A post-game jersey auction and portion of ticket sales raised more than $28,000 for the families of CMPD, CFD, Mecklenburg EMS agency and Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s office. The yearly event has raised more than $128,000 since its inception.
Additional charitable events/programs included:
The Checkers were also able to raise enough money to purchase a house for Zach Bennett and his family, who have relocated from Albany, N.Y. to Charlotte to be closer to the team and seek better medical care for his disease, neurofibromatosis (NF1). The project would not have been possible without the help of Timberstone Homes, a local builder which donated time and resources to completely retro-fit and renovate the home.
Ticket fundraising programs and donated memorabilia were able to help many non-profit organizations raise more than $57,000 over the course of the season. For details on the Checkers’ fundraising programs and how it can help you, visit www.gocheckers.com/community/fundraising/.
Annual Charity Golf Classic - $11,860
Fans joined players and staff for a day of golf benefiting Discovery Place, Teach for America and Presbyterian Hemby Children’s Hospital.
Pooch Party - $2,856
Checkers fans were able to bring their dogs to the game and $2,856 was raised for the Humane Society of Charlotte.
Skating for Sudan - $10,000
Charlotte Latin school and the Checkers teamed up for a ticket sales fundraiser benefiting Charlotte resident James Lubo Majik’s school-building project.
Goodwill clothing drive
More than $8,600 worth of clothing items were collected for Goodwill at a Checkers game.
Teddy Bear Toss
1,973 teddy bears were collected at the Dec. 10th game and delivered by players and CheckMates to Presbyterian Hemby Children’s Hospital.
In addition to funds raised, the Checkers also made 150 appearances in the community with players, Chubby, the CheckMates and staff members, including hospital and school visits and youth hockey practices.
Pick Up A Book And Read
The Checkers invited area schools to participate in the Pick Up A Book and Read program, designed to motivate and encourage students to challenge and improve their reading abilities. In total, 1,164,076 pages were read by 745 students in 93 classrooms in 24 schools in the Charlotte area.
Non-profit Ticket Donations
The Checkers donated 1,500 tickets over the course of the season to area non-profits for use in fundraisers and charitable gifts.
For more information on the Checkers’ community programs or for information on how you can have players, CheckMates or Chubby at your event, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 704-342-4423.
This Community update is brought to you by Goodrich Corporation, who is a proud sponsor of all Checkers community initiatives. Goodrich Corporation, a Fortune 500 company, is a global supplier of systems and services to the aerospace, defense and homeland security markets. With 2007 revenues of $6.4 billion, Goodrich is headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., and employs more than 24,000 people worldwide in approximately 90 facilities across 16 countries.
Much of the funds raised and programs instituted would not have been possible without help from Checkers partners such as Presbyterian Hospital, AutoTrader.com, Amtrak, Community Blood Center of the Carolinas, Goodwill, Timberstone Homes and Wells Fargo, among others.