Breakaways and Bears with the Rapid City Rush | Black Hills Travel Blog

Breakaways and Bears with the Rapid City Rush

  • Breakaways and Bears with the Rapid City Rush
    Breakaways and Bears with the Rapid City Rush
By : 
Mat Peters

A Bear Rush!

I love hockey.  I love the atmosphere; the cool air, the sounds of the skates on the ice, the comradery and cheering of the fans. I love to watch the expert finesse of the skating and puck handling, punctuated by an open-ice check or a mid-play fight. Also good to note, I’m sorry baseball fans, it was in fact hockey that started the, “playoff beard”—Google it!

I’m fortunate that I can satisfy my need to watch live hockey right here at home in the Black Hills, and not just any hockey, but GOOD hockey. The Rush, founded in 2008, are now on their sixth season in the CHL. They already hold one President’s Cup Championship and are well on their way to another great season while leading the league with an 18-3 record.

I attended Friday night’s game along with a co-worker and fellow hockey nut. The arena was populated by the usual hardcore fans as well as another group of fans who ventured out for a great cause; the Toys for Tots, Teddy Bear Toss. This event, hosted by the Rush in conjunction with local police and fire departments, raised 1,544 bears that will be donated to local children this holiday season.

The fans were very eager to participate in this fun and exciting event. They brought teddy bears by the armload and the bag-full. We found ourselves ducking after the first goal* as over 1,500 teddy bears flew over our heads and cascaded all around us onto the hockey rink. It took a huge crew of Firemen and Police Officers to clear the bears from the ice.

It was an awesome sight to see that many people so eager to give to such a great cause during this holiday season. The bears will no doubt find themselves in loving and grateful arms come Christmas. Unfortunately, the Rush had one of their rare losses, but regardless, it was a special night marked by a heart-warming cause.

For more information, or to purchase tickets for the Rapid City Rush, rapidcityrush.com.

*The goal was later called back, but throwing 1,544 teddy bears back to the crowd was understandably a logistical problem.

A very special thanks to the Rapid City Rush for hosting us at Friday's game. We enjoyed your hospitality!

Photos by: Greg Valladolid

 

About the Author

Mat is a Black Hills native. Growing up just outside of Hill City, his fondest memories involve exploring his Black Hills backyard with his black lab Dodger. Colorado called his name after high school so he moved to the Western Slope where he earned his BA in Mass Communication and raced for the mountain and road cycling programs at Colorado Mesa University. As is the case with countless others, the Black Hills pulled him back in. He recently left the brown cloud of Denver to return home where he works for Black Hills, Badlands & Lakes Association. In his spare time, Mat enjoys pedaling bicycles, playing music, cooking, hiking and trying to be a climber.

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