Calgary, AB — The Western Hockey League is pleased to announce that WHL Member Clubs have collected over 91,000 teddy bears and winter wear leading up to the WHL Christmas Break this year. Each season WHL Clubs host Teddy Bear or Toque and Mitten Toss Nights where fans are encouraged to bring a new plush toy or winter wear to toss on the ice when the home team scores their first goal of the game. WHL Players, Club staff and countless volunteers then collect all the teddy bears and winter wear from the ice surface during this League-wide promotion.
The plush toys and winter wear are then donated by the WHL Club to several charitable organizations, literally reaching out to thousands of families and children in need, not just in WHL markets, but to other communities well beyond.
“The Teddy Bear and other Toss Nights demonstrate how our WHL Clubs continue to support local charitable organizations through unique promotions such as this,” commented WHL Commissioner Ron Robison. “We extend our appreciation to all the WHL Club staff and volunteers as well as our corporate partners who have made it possible for us to support thousands of families and children at this special time of year.”
Teddy Bear Toss events have been conducted in the Western Hockey League for almost two decades now. They have now become one of our Clubs biggest attendance draws and is now a holiday tradition in almost every WHL market across the League.
Some notable ‘Toss Nights’ in the WHL occurred in Calgary as the Hitmen collected 25,303 teddy bears, the Portland Winterhawks gathered 10,249, the Vancouver Giants 7,500 while the Edmonton Oil Kings fans tossed 6,600 teddy bears to the ice. Each WHL market, from small to large, contributes to the success of these events and the overall goal of the WHL Members Clubs giving back to the communities that support them.
Video of WHL ‘Teddy Bear Toss Nights’ have also become YouTube sensations with the 2011 Calgary Hitmen ‘Teddy Bear Toss’ garnering over 650,000 views (CLICK HERE) and the Vancouver Giants ‘Teddy Bear Toss’ has collected over 87,000 views (CLICK HERE) to date. The Hitmen video was also featured across the United States on ABC’s ‘Good Morning America’.
CLICK HERE to watch the WHL Video highlighting all Teddy Bear Tosses across the League