Indiana Daily Student

"Dropping the Puck" raised cancer awareness

Freshman Maderine Aybar figure skates Saturday at Frank Southern Ice Arena. The performance was a part of the charity event to benefit the American Brain Tumor Association.
Freshman Maderine Aybar figure skates Saturday at Frank Southern Ice Arena. The performance was a part of the charity event to benefit the American Brain Tumor Association.

Fraternity hockey teams faced off and local Hoosiers learned to ice skate at the third annual Dropping the Puck on Cancer event Saturday afternoon at Frank Southern Ice Arena.

Sponsored by Collegiate Charities, this year’s event featured additional sponsorships from the Bloomington Blades Hockey Association and the Foundation for Monroe County Community Schools.

Local attorney Carl Lamb, president of the board of directors and CEO of Collegiate Charities, said the event has grown in popularity every year, especially from the support of the IU campus.

“This is the first year we’ve actually reached out to the local community,” Lamb said. “I really see this as something eventually going to monumental proportions.”

In the event’s first year, Lamb said it took 60 hours for tickets to sell out for the fraternity hockey games. This year, tickets sold out in an hour and a half.

Kappa Sigma and Delta Tau Delta hockey teams competed Friday night, while Sigma Chi and Beta Theta Pi competed Saturday. Ticket sales from each game will make up a majority of the funds donated to help aid cancer research, Lamb said.

Money from the event will also be used to provide youth fitness and wellness initiatives to local community and schools.

To add more variety this year, the event offered ice skating lessons and entertainment consisting of figure skaters, ice dancers and speed skaters.

In addition, IU alumna Kayla Wood from the Discovery Channel’s reality television show “Porter Ridge” performed at this year’s event.

Although the event is only sponsored locally, Lamb said he has plans to reach out to the Big Ten Conference in order to increase fundraising totals.

Last year, the event raised up to $25,000, and Lamb said he is hopeful this year’s fundraising total will be even more.

After another successful year, Lamb said he is hopeful the event will have more national sponsors in the years to come, including reaching out to the National Hockey League.

Lamb said he has already talked with representatives from the University of Minnesota to spread awareness about the event.

“This is a very special event, because you don’t see as much hockey in Bloomington, since Indiana is a basketball state,” Lamb said.

Kathleen Oliver, president of the Bloomington Blades Hockey Association Board, said this year’s event was a great opportunity to involve more community outreach.

“We think it’s important for kids to stay in shape and thought this event would be a great idea to fundraise for,” Oliver said.

Besides ticket sales, the event also raised money through auctions and raffles, which Oliver said included gift cards and an autographed IU hockey jersey.

Oliver said the event also featured Bloomington High School South student athlete Cameron Bland, who currently is battling kidney cancer.

Bland is an inspiration to others and served as a good representation of what Dropping the Puck on Cancer is all about, Oliver said.

“Cancer is everywhere around us and everybody to some degree, I believe, has been affected by it,” Lamb said. “And while we never may beat the cause, that doesn’t mean we can’t try and spread the awareness. I am very pleased from the amount of student support this year.”

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