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Steelheads Thank Fans and Corporate Sponsors for Community Support

Wednesday, April 29th
Steelheads Thank Fans and Corporate Sponsors for Community Support

The Idaho Steelheads 2008-09 season ended sooner than anybody wanted; however, the season was a success both on and off the ice.On the ice, the team ended with its best ECHL regular season ever having collected 44 wins, and top honors receiving the player and goaltender of the month claiming the final awards of the season. In addition, a record number of former Steelheads spent time in the National Hockey League this season bringing the total number of former Steelheads to get in ?The Show? to 11. (All-time list: G-Chad Alban, F-Jay Beagle, G-Matt Climie, F-B.J. Crombeen, G-Dan Ellis, F-Zenon Konopka, F-Gavin Morgan, F-Ben Ondrus, F-Warren Peters, F-Tom Wandell, and F-Jeremy Yablonski) Off the ice, the Idaho Steelheads along with their generous corporate and community partners and fans, helped raise awareness and funds for many local organizations. The team also participated in many great local causes. The Steelheads Foundation, presented by SmartHealth, worked to improve people?s lives with the following events and contributions:JERSEYS OFF THEIR BACKSJersey auctions raised just under $30,000 for three great causes; the Steelheads partnered with St. Luke?s Idaho Elks Rehabilitation Services to raise money for Special Olympics Idaho and pediatric care at SLIERS; Pepsi to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association of Idaho; and St. Luke?s RMC to raise money for breast cancer patients at the Mountain States Tumor Institute (MSTI). Over the past few years, the Steelheads and their partners have raised a total $298,782 from jerseys ?off their backs? auctions.REWARDS FOR EDUCATIONThe Qwest HatTrick Reading Program, in partnership with Qwest Communications and Treasure Valley public libraries, gave children incentives to read by rewarding them with great prizes such as tickets to games and Steelheads hats!The Banner Bank Stick With It, Stay in School Program rewarded children across the Treasure Valley for perfect attendance at school with tickets to games and sticks!FOCUS ON FITNESSSmartHealth brought players to elementary schools with the Be Hip Get Fit Play Hockey Program to teach children the importance of staying physically fit and to have fun doing so. Players talked to children about taking care of their bodies, then played exhilarating, heart-thumping games of floor hockey!Qwest Communications, in partnership with the Steelheads, invited the public to get fit with the annual free skate at Qwest Arena. The Steelheads players and mascot Blue skated with members of the public, posed for pictures and signed autographs.The Steelheads support youth hockey around the Valley wherever they can, and Head Coach Derek Laxdal donated his time to conduct numerous coach?s clinics and instructional camps for both youth hockey players and women?s teams. Youth hockey programs, Jr. Steelheads and figure skating programs benefited from various fundraisers gathering $19,650 through programs such as the Commercial Tire Chuck-A-Puck and ticket fundraisers.The Steelheads regularly highlighted young local athletes at games throughout the season with the Higgins and Rutlege Mighty Mites and Idaho IceWorld Figure Skating Program.Johnny Knoxville and Tim Shriver were just a couple of the celebrities that played alongside Steelheads forwards Justin Bourne, Craig Cescon and Derek Paget in the World Special Olympics Celebrity Floor Hockey game. The Steelheads loaned out their practice jerseys for the celebs and athletes to wear for the game.Several Steelheads players helped kick off the American Heart Association?s ?Start the Heart Walk? by joining forces with community members to bring awareness to living healthy and taking care of our hearts.SAY "NO" TO DRUGSHealth and Welfare?s Project Filter has an important message and the Steelheads helped deliver it. Promoting Project Filter?s message through the Tobacco-Free Kids Program that tobacco hurts all of us, the Steelheads helped spread the message to children during classroom and non-profit visits. In Idaho, smoking kills more people than alcohol, AIDS, car crashes, illegal drugs, murders, and suicides combined.The Idaho Meth Project teamed up with the Idaho Steelheads to significantly reduce first-time Methamphetamine use with a program called, Not Even Once! Each time the Steelheads shutout an opponent at home during the 2008-09 season, Not Even Once!, the Steelheads Foundation donated $1,000 to the Idaho Meth Project. This year?s total was $3,000.Steelheads players talked with students from several elementary and middle schools from Boise to Payette, through the Drug Free Idaho Program, about staying away from substances that could harm their bodies, and instead, staying active and staying healthy.GREEN. PERIOD. COOL. PERIOD.The Steelheads went GREEN and thank the following green partners for the great work they?re doing in our community: ACHD?s Commuteride ? Don?t Drive to the Game, Commute!, Green Foundations Building Center, Renewable Energy Resources, Ferox Fuel Tabs, and the City of Boise.PETS ARE PEOPLE TOO!The Steelheads and WestVet teamed up for homeless pets for another successful Pucks for Pets! event?two dogs were adopted, $1,700 was raised through a raffle, 350 pounds of dog food and 100 cans of cat food were collected to help homeless cats and dogs through the volunteer-run nonprofit Northwest Animal Companions. CELEBRATING SERVICEThe Steelheads were proud to partner with The US Army, a key component of the U.S. Armed Forces, made up of the best-trained, most dedicated, most respected Soldiers in the world ? protecting America?s freedoms at home and abroad, securing our homeland, and defending democracy worldwide. Before a standing ovation and an emotional ceremony on the ice during a Steelheads game this year, the Army held a ?swear in? to accepts dozens of recruits as new soldiers.The Steelheads paid special tribute to our veterans who have served in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars by hosting service personnel and families at a game. A military color guard presented the flag and Marine Captain Brian Stephenson and Gunnery Sergeant Tim Dennison, who both served in Iraq, dropped the ceremonial first puck. Sgt. Rosalie Bedke sang the National Anthem.The Steelheads honored local firefighters and police officers at a game to recognize the brave men and women who serve our community on a daily basis. Several hundred firefighters and police officers and their family members attended a game and firefighters, in cooperation with police officers, sold raffle tickets at the game to raise money for the Burn Out Fund to assist the families who lost their homes and personal belongings during the tragic Southeast Boise fire last August. Also, the Steelheads and Qwest Arena hosted the annual Guns n? Hoses charitable hockey game.COMMUNITY DRIVES AND DONATIONSToy Drive: The Steelheads Booster Club hosted the 9th Annual Marine Corps Toys for Tots Toy Toss in December and gathered nearly 1,000 toys and raised $2,000 for children in need over the holidays. Coat Drive: The Steelheads collected coats for kids during a couple of games at Qwest Arena for a local nonprofit organization, the Boise Rescue Mission, which then distributed them to children in need across the Treasure Valley. The Steelheads, in turn, gave each donor a ?2-for-1? ticket voucher to a future Steelheads game.Pajama Drive: The Steelheads also asked fans to bring new childrens? pajamas (ages baby to teen) to the rink next during a week-long drive to help families in need in the Treasure Valley. The pj?s were given to the The Pajama Program, Idaho Chapter, a 501©3 not-for-profit organization that serves abandoned, neglected and abused children. Every person who made a donation received a ?2-for-1? ticket voucher to use for a future Steelheads game and a raffle ticket for prizes. Food Drive: The Steelheads teamed up with Commercial Tire to collect food for the Idaho Foodbank at a game. The team contributed a ?2-for-1? ticket voucher to each donor to a future Steelheads game. Later in the season, Kraft Foods donated thousands of boxes of Mac?n Cheese for fans to use as noisemakers at the game, then leave for donation in the Idaho Foodbank barrels as they left.Ticket and Prize Donations: The Steelheads donated $31,180 worth of tickets and prizes for area schools, churches and non-profits to raffle off during fundraising events. The coach, players and mascot also made numerous appearances at local events.FAMILY FUN!The Steelheads held a free Hockey 101 Open House to educate fans about the rules of hockey, and provided prizes and opportunities to try on Steelheads gear and meet the team!RC Willey and NAPA Auto Parts offered great deals to families to enjoy Steelheads games throughout the season.Harmon Travel gave a lucky Steelheads Season Ticket Holders a cruise for two on the Mexican Riviera.The Idaho Lottery gave a Steelheads fan a trip for two to Las Vegas!Moxie Java offered free mochas when the Steelheads scored five or more goals during a home game with the ?5 In The Net, A Moxie You Get!?THANK YOU FOR YEARS OF SUPPORTThank you again to our fans and partners in the community. Together, over 12 seasons of hockey, you have helped the Steelheads contribute more than $1.5m dollars back into worthy community causes.- www.idahosteelheads.com -

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