Fans at the Brandt Centre Friday night will get to see what it looks like when it rains teddy bears.
It’s the annual teddy bear toss night, where those in attendance are asked to bring a stuffed toy to the game and throw it on the ice after the Pats’ first goal.
The stuffed animals will be donated to children in need and delivered by the Pats to the children’s wards next week.
For the players, it’s one of the most fun nights of the year. A night when scoring the first goal is extra special.
Last year, the honour went to Riley Woods – who now plays for the Spokane Chiefs – but both Wyatt Sloboshan and Matt Bradley have scored the teddy bear goal on their previous teams.
“It’s something special, it’s kind of the biggest goal of the year during the regular season, everyone wants to score that goal because that’s a big moment for sure,” Sloboshan said.
Bradley added that scoring the goal comes with some extra bragging rights and some friendly wagers in the locker room.
“Everyone is kinda chomping at the bit to get that goal that game, it’s kind of internal competition I guess. Scoring that goal is special and it should be a good one.”
Bradley has scored the teddy bear toss goal once with his old team the Medicine Hat Tigers and last year correctly predicted who on his team would score it.
This year, his money is on teammate Josh Mahura.
But regardless of who scores it, the part the team enjoys the most comes afterwards when the teddies are gathered and delivered to the kids.
“It’s a big moment … it’s kind of a heartfelt moment for us too, getting to go do that and seeing the smiles on their faces, there’s a bigger meaning to it,” Sloboshan said.
Tickets are still available for Friday’s game against the Kelowna Rockets. Puck drop is at 7 p.m.
The Pats ask fans to bring a new toy to the game, but a limited number will be available for purchase at the Pats’ store and inside the Brandt Centre.