Teddy Bear Toss part of hockey match-up with alumni Tuesday

At 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 22, the Mariner co-op hockey team meets alumni on the ice at Kevin Bell Arena for their annual match-up.

But it’s not just your average game.

This year, Mariners past and present will join hockey teams around the country in a hockey Christmas tradition: the Teddy Bear Toss. When the game’s first goal is scored, spectators are invited to throw stuffed animals onto the ice. The players then gather up the toys to deliver to children in need.

The Kamloops Blazers started the tradition in 1993, and it’s gained strength ever since — last month, fans of the Calgary Hitmen covered the ice in their arena with 28,815 stuffed animals. Though Homer’s toss may not be of the same magnitude, team members and parents are hoping to see lots of community members at the rink. They ask that people bring only new inanimate animal friends in plastic bags. All the donated toys will go to local organizations including South Peninsula Haven House, Helping Hands in Anchor Point, South Peninsula Hospital, and local law enforcement and EMTs.

For more information, call Tracey Tillion at 399-3211.