Monday, November 30th, 2009
Renegades and Rusty Anchors Easter Seals skate
Before taking to the ice Friday against the Simcoe Storm, the Woodstock Renegades had already spent an hour skating around the Southwood Arena.
It wasn't an impromptu practice that had the Woodstock players circling the rink but the annual Easter Seals Skate fund-raiser. More than five-dozen supporters, including some of the local Easter Seals kids, joined the Woodstock players on the ice.
"It's a great turnout that we get," said Rick Kelly, who helped host the event with his Rusty Anchors old-timers hockey team. "The community always seems to step it up."
The money was raised through pledges obtained by the skate participants, who also enjoyed a meet-and-greet pizza party with the Renegade players.
For the second year in a row, Chris Klein-Geltink -- one of the Renegades' top fans -- raised the most money for the Easter Seals, earning an autographed stick and jersey from the Woodstock club.
"Every year, we have people who collect pledges and sponsors ... and it makes a difference," Kelly said. "It doesn't matter how much people donate ... because very dollar is important.
"The money we raise for Easter Seals stays in our community, and that's very, very important."
The Easter Seals also made money from the pre-game sales of teddy bears, which were tossed on the ice when Cole Maher scored for the Renegades early in the first period. The bears were then collected and donated to the Salvation Army for its Angel Tree program.
"That's kind of a win-win," said Angela Utting, the parent resource chair for the Oxford District
This year, the local Easter Seals was facing a deficit of about $7,600, Utting said. Despite the shortfall, Utting said the Easter Seals still had two Oxford children on the waiting list for needed equipment.
The Easter Seals is a not-for- profit organization dedicated to helping children, youth and young adults with physical disabilities "achieve their full individual potential and future independence." The group funds disability solutions through financial assistance, summer camps, its Recreational Choices Funding Program, research, advocacy, and public and consumer education.
People interested in making a donation to the Easter Seals program can contact the regional office in London at 519-432-9669 ext. 223.