The 22nd annual Hockey Challenge at the accesso ShoWare Center in Kent raised $200,000 for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Western Washington and Alaska.
The Hockey Challenge has raised $6.6 million for Ronald McDonald House Charities in 22 years, according to a Seattle Thunderbirds news release.
There were seven games played during the Challenge on Saturday, Feb. 15. The first five games were played by teams from various divisions at Microsoft, two women’s teams made up of local recreational league players, two teams put together by the grassroots group NHLtoSeattle and the NHL Seattle 32s, a team made up of employees of the 32nd NHL franchise. The T-Birds vs. Vancouver Giants game followed the five Challenge games and the event was capped off by the local Celebrity and T-Birds Alumni All-Star Game featuring Team Olczyk vs. Team Patterson.
The teams that played in the Challenge raise money to play in the Challenge. All proceeds from the Challenge directly support operations of the Seattle and Anchorage Ronald McDonald Houses, which provide a home-away-from-home to support families while their children receive the critical medical care they need. Last year, the houses provided more than 39,000 nights of housing and services to over 1,800 families in Seattle and Anchorage.
“Every year, we are so inspired by the way the hockey community comes together to support the Ronald McDonald House,” said Vanessa Kirk Briley, director of special events at Ronald McDonald Houses. “We are so grateful to everyone who makes this event such a success: the Thunderbirds, the players, the sponsors, the attendees, and the volunteers. Because of the efforts of all these groups, families can count on having a comfortable and supportive environment during their treatment.”
“It was great to see the Challenge teams work together to support Ronald McDonald House and we are very pleased we were able to raise $200,000,” said Colin Campbell, T-Birds vice president. “The Challenge is such an important annual event for us and Ronald McDonald House. We would not be able to raise the money we have without the support of our awesome fans, partners, T-Birds and accesso ShoWare Center staffs, volunteers and alumni.”