Hockey Team Collects Over 45K Stuffed Animals For Charity

They broke their record this year, all thanks to the generosity of their fans.

A dude in a movie once said, "we're gonna need a bigger boat."

This was the caption of a Twitter post made by the Hershey Bears hockey team after their home game last Sunday. The Bears broke an important record that day, but it had nothing to do with hockey.

Each year the team hosts a "Teddy Bear Toss," a tradition where fans are encouraged to throw stuffed teddy bears and other plush toys onto the ice after the Bears score their first goal. Like clockwork, when Christian Djoos scored the Bear Toss goal against the Hartford Wolf Pack, teddy bears came flying from the stands. As the plush toys continued to rain down on the ice, players helped to gather the toys and posed for a few snaps, a few even dove into the heaping piles of teddy bears for a cuddly photo opp.

Once the toys were tallied, the team found out that they smashed the previous year's record of 34,798 bears by collecting over 45,000 teddy bears this time around. The toys will be donated to 40 charities around Hershey, PA including the Milton Hershey School, Children's Miracle Network and the American Cancer Society where they'll be given to sick and underprivileged children, just in time for the holidays.

Among the thousands of toys were giant stuffed animals, teddy bears of all shapes and colors and other plush toys. In addition to the animals, Community Aid, the organization that sponsors the event each year, will donate 25 cents per stuffed animal to the Children's Miracle Network. A club seat ticket holder for the Bears will also donate $1 per teddy bear to the Sweigart Family Foundation.

The annual event is a favorite for the players and fans alike. After their record-breaking night, the Hershey Bears shared messages and videos on their social media pages celebrating their achievement and recognizing the immense generosity of the community.

They're going to need a bigger boat, indeed.

Even if you weren't part of the record-breaking Teddy Bear Toss, you can still contribute by donating to any of the charities involved. Just click the links below to make a donation:

Children's Miracle Network

American Cancer Society


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