ANTIGONISH, N.S. - It’s year two for the Inspector Tony Perry Memorial Hockey Game, which is a fun, fundraising contest between RCMP and first responder players.
The game will take place Oct. 28, at the Antigonish Arena, with a 2 p.m. puck drop.
Proceeds from the game, which includes a silent auction and admission by donation, go towards Helping the Helpers and the Antigonish chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Drivers (MADD).
“Dad was involved with a lot of different organizations and one was MADD, which we’re contributing to this year; the Antigonish chapter so it will stay local,” Melanie Marchand, daughter of the popular former staff sergeant with the Antigonish RCMP detachment, who passed away in October of 2016.
She noted the local MADD chapter has honoured her father with the creation of a bursary in his name, which has been awarded the last couple of school years to a graduating Dr. J.H. Gillis Regional High School senior.
“It [MADD] was a big one he was involved with during a lot of his time in Antigonish,” she said.
As for the upcoming game, Marchand said preparations are going along well and now it’s just about getting the word out to see, hopefully, a strong attendance.
“We had a great turnout last year and there was a lot of positive feedback, so I hope that is enough to entice people to come back out this year,” she said, adding that, having a year under their belts as organizers, helped in setting up for this year’s game.
“I feel like a lot of the footwork was done in the sense that we had some connections already made and knew some of the expectations. Last year, it was all brand new; this year we knew where to turn for certain things.”
Marchand added she did a bit of a survey to figure out what was popular and, with that knowledge, made sure those activities will be coming back to this year’s game.
“Same as last year as far as the mascots adding to the entertainment and emergency vehicles available to be checked out, which was a huge hit,” she said. “Bearamedic, Safety Bear, Robocop, Smokey the Bear, all the mascots are lined up to come back with us this year. As well as the emergency vehicles outside, which was fun for the kids.”
She noted the local Atlantic Superstore is back on board as far as providing free hot chocolate for those attending and it should be an enjoyable afternoon for the whole family.
“It helps a family get out for a fun afternoon without having to worry about spending a lot,” she said.
A selection of the silent auction items can be seen on the event’s Facebook page – Insp. Tony Perry Memorial Hockey Game – which is also a great site for the latest information on the game. There is also a website for the game - perrymemorialhockey.com.
Marchand said one of her son’s summed up the experience of the game for her family noting it’s about “memories.”
“Remembering him as a real community person,” she said. “And just having a sense of community, because dad was very involved.
“At the end of the day, it’s about bringing people together and highlighting the work of our first responders … supporting the work they do.”