The Colorado Avalanche hosted an event to celebrate Swedish heritage and to fundraise for Gabriel Landeskog’s anti-bullying initiative.
The Colorado Avalanche hosted their third annual Swedish Heritage Day. Participants purchased a ticket through a special email list. Part of the proceeds went back to Friends, captain Gabriel Landeskog‘s anti-bullying initiative.
The first Friends event that I attended was three years ago. You bought the ticket through the link, and you got into Pepsi Center a little early. You then sat in a special section and watched a video talking about what the Friends initiative is all about.
This isn’t exactly the video, but it will give you the flavor:
Last year, I got an email inviting me to the Swedish Heritage Day, which would also promote the Friends initiative. With this event, you purchased your ticket and met at the Peak Pub House on club level after the game, which was the afternoon tilt before Martin Luther King, Jr., day. At this even, you got to meet Landeskog himself.
This year was the same deal. As an incentive, the Swedish Heritage group also invited ticket holder who purchased a lower level ticket to receive a player T-shirt. Alas, I didn’t see the email soon enough to pick up my T-shirt.
However, we still got a bonus. Because this year, for Swedish Heritage, we got not one but two Swedes. Landeskog is now joined by fellow Swede Andre Burakovsy — whom the announcers are finally stating comes from Sweden. (He was born in Austria, where his father was playing hockey, but he doesn’t even speak German! He’s 100% Swede.)
Though he didn’t take pictures with fans, Pierre-Edouard Bellemare also showed up. As we know, he’s from France, However, at the age of 20, he started playing for the Swedish hockey leagues. He lived in Sweden for nine years and is fluent in the language. I believe his wife is from Sweden.
Anyway, it’s a fun event to be a part of, even if I, myself, am not in any way Swedish. Many of the fans who attended the after party, such as it were, are of Swedish descent or even from Sweden.
I, for one, would like to see the Colorado Avalanche promote more heritage nights. We have a relatively diverse team, for the NHL, and it would be great to promote that in the relatively diverse city of Denver.