The fifth annual Sirens Hockey Game, which sees local firefighters and Airdrie mounties face-off will be taking place today.
As with previous years, the goal of the hockey game is to help garner donations and items for the Airdrie 1st Club's Holiday Hamper Program; and with the hamper program seeing skyrocketing demand, the hockey game will be instrumental.
"Each year, they [the Airdrie 1st Club] tailors it; the hockey game is entry by donation and this year they're targeting [gifts and gift card] for teenage boys and men's stocking stuffers. Gift cards are always ideal," said Andrew MacPherson, the Charities President of Airdrie Firefighters Charitable Foundation.
MacPherson added that this year the game will take place on Sunday afternoon at the Ron Ebbesen arena from 2:00 until 4:15 p.m., which he hopes will allow more families and children to attend.
MacPherson also reminded Airdronians that there are donation boxes already set up at the city's three fire stations, as well as a donation box at the Airdrie RCMP detachment for those who wish to donate earlier or if they are unable to attend the hockey game.
Heather Harke, media member for the Airdrie 1st Club, underlined that with many families facing strained finances due to inflation and the rising cost of living, the need for donations towards the Holiday Hamper Program are truly needed and truly appreciated.
"Our need has increased 75 per cent, [in comparison to this time last year. It's a devastating time for a lot of people and the hamper program serves to help everyone feel like they are having a joyous time during the holidays."
She estimated upwards of 400 hampers will be prepared in the coming weeks for those in need.
Although the rivalry between first responders leading up to the game has always been a signature of the Sirens hockey game, MacPherson said he hopes that this year, the game will be more dynamic, and more competitive.
"We just want a more even game - just so that it gets more fun and more interesting to watch," he said.
Special guests that will be appearing on the ice alongside firefighters and police are 'Canada's most unreliable broadcast team' - Olly Postanin and Jacob Ardown from 'On the Bench'. Various Calgary Flames Alumni have also been invited to participate.
Last year's 2022 Siren's charity hockey game was won by firefighters with a score of 13-4.
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