Hockey players are often renowned for their charity work. Whether it be visiting sick kids in a children’s hospital or hosting wounded soldiers at their home games, fans always love to hear about what their favorite players are like off the ice.
On Sunday, December 5, the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins gave their fans a chance to interact with the first place team in a relaxed environment. The team sponsored the first annual Pens and Pins charity bowling tournament at Chacko’s Family Bowling Center in Wilkes-Barre, PA.
The event was made up of several teams, with five or six Penguins fans per team. All Penguins players, along with coaches John Hynes and Alain Nasreddine and radio announcers Tom Grace and Scott Stuccio, were randomly paired with each team. Prior to the tournament, a fan from each team selected a name out of a bucket, and whoever was drawn out of the bucket was that team’s captain.
Each team bowled two games. Chacko’s put a unique spin on the traditional bowling experience by making the second game a glow bowling environment. They turned down the lights and put on dance music while red lights flashed on the lanes.
Although fans only had one player on their team, they were able to get autographs and take pictures with their other favorite players.
At the end of the day, the scores of each team were tallied. The team captained by Joey Haddad won the tournament, while the event’s individual winner had two games of 266 and 211.
Penguins personnel wore special black and gold bowling shirts for the event. The shirts had each player’s or staff’s last name written in script on the left side and a bowling pin on each arm. The back of the shirt had the 2010 Pens and Pins logo. A shirt autographed by the entire team was raffled off at the end of the day, and the individual shirts will be raffled at upcoming Wilkes-Barre/Scranton home games.
All proceeds from the event will benefit Allied Services in Wilkes-Barre.
There seems to be no doubt that Pens and Pins will be held again in 2011. The tournament sold out in advance, and fans could not stop talking about the great time they had. The players also looked to be enjoying themselves and were happy to get to know their fans and have a good time for an area charity.