On Friday December 12th when the Sioux Falls Stampede takes on the Tri-City Storm, the home ice will be covered with bears. The Stampede and Avera McKennan have teamed up for a great project (Teddy Bear Toss) and it's going to raining teddy bears after the herd scores their first goal.
As part of a new promotion Avera McKennan's Director of Retail Stores Jen Grossman ordered 150 Gund Teddy Bears dressed in Avera green. Stamped with the Stampede logo. They want you to buy one. After the Stampede scores it's first goal on Tri-City Friday night you throw the bears on the ice. Then on December 17th some of the players will return those bears to Avera McKennan by hand delivering them to children who are patients in the pediatric unit. It's never fun to be in the hospital, especially during the holidays.
Leah Krantz is a Child Life Specialist for Avera McKennan. She says, "It means a lot to the kids who are here. For me personally, I've been in the hospital a lot, especially when I was a kid. Just knowing they are away from home and away from the Christmas Tree it just gets their spirits up."
The bears cost $11 (tax included) and you can get them at the Avera McKennan Gift Shop which is on the main floor of the hospital. You might want to consider buying 2. Throw one, keep one. They make a great stocking stuffer. Avera folks will also be selling the teddy bears at the arena before the game and through the first period.
Jen Grossman says, "We are planning to make this an annual event. We'll change out their shirt."
Avera McKennan and the Stampede are thrilled to team up. Giving back to the community is nothing new to either of them.
Stampede President Jim Loria says, "We've raised half a million dollars in 10 years for charities in Sioux Falls and kids really appreciate the involvement. We are teaching them life skills. You can't put a price on that."
Game time is 7:05 and hopefully the shower of teddy bears comes raining down shortly after that. Now that's the kind of ice storm we want to see.