As the Calgary Hitmen took on the Kamloops Blazers, 29,635 teddy bears hit the ice for a good cause at Sunday’s WHL game at the Scotiabank Saddledome.
The Brick Teddy Bear Toss collected stuffed animals from Calgarians and more than 70 local agencies to share with kids in need. The Hitmen said the Brick is donating 25 cents for every bear tossed to the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation for a total of $7,408.75.
Just 4:18 into the first period, Hitmen forward Kaden Elder scored the first goal, calling the moment it started raining bears surreal.
“It was definitely an awesome experience and something that I probably would never forget,” he said. “The atmosphere at the rink was crazy, so many fans supporting, so many teddy bears on the ice. It was definitely an adrenaline rush.”
Hitmen Head Coach Steve Hamilton said the crowd’s response was amazing.
“It was nice to see Kaden get that one early — the place lit up,” he said. “Certainly, a very, very special event.”
WATCH: Community reporter Deb Matejicka reports on the record high number of stuffed animals the Calgary Hitmen’s teddy bear toss game hauled in and those who received the cuddly creatures.
The Hitmen beat the Blazers 6 to 3.
Since the first toss in 1995, the Hitmen said they have provided the community with 377,583 teddy bears.
The Hitmen Hockey Club delivered the stuffed toys to the Alberta Children’s Hospital on Monday.