Nonprofits and Sports Business

Grand Rapids Griffins score $60K for Youth Foundation

September 10, 2013
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Grand Rapids Griffins tee off for Youth Foundation
Grand Rapids Griffins defenseman Brennan Evans tees off with the Calder Cup at his side. Photo via

The 19th Annual Grand Rapids Griffins Youth Foundation Golf Classic at Egypt Valley Country Club in Ada raised an estimated $60,000 for the team’s charity.

The event was held for the fifth consecutive year at the 36-hole club

Half of the golfers played the Ridge course, while the other half toured the Valley’s 18 holes.

The golf classic at the end of August also included dinner and an auction, with receipts from the auction going to the Griffins Youth Foundation.

Largest auction bids

The largest bid of $550 came for a pair of tickets to the NHL’s Winter Classic Game between the Detroit Red Wings and the Toronto Maple Leafs on Jan. 1 at Michigan Stadium — and two tickets to see the Griffins face the Toronto Marlies on Dec. 30 at Comerica Park, as part of the Hockeytown Winter Festival.

Both games will be played outdoors, a first for the Griffins. Both were re-scheduled from last year due to the NHL lockout that cancelled the Winter Classic, the Winter Festival and reduced the NHL’s regular season to 48 games.

A golf foursome at Arcadia Bluffs raised $525 in the auction for the Youth Foundation.

Another bid of $525 was made to lease the Griffins suite at Van Andel Arena for a home game.

The golf classic has raised more than $1 million for the Griffins Youth Foundation over the years. The foundation was started in 1995, and each year it enables 350 underprivileged, underserved and special-need kids to participate in its programs at no cost.

2013-2014 Schedule

The Griffins will begin their 18th season on the road against Rochester on Oct. 4 and will raise their AHL Calder Cup championship banner at the arena on Oct. 18 when they host Milwaukee.

The team’s home opener has sold out every year.

Other home schedule highlights include the club’s 17th annual New Year’s Eve game against Toronto and its 13th annual matinee game on Nov. 6 with Rockford.

The Griffins will have a season-high seven game homestand from Nov. 29 to Dec. 14.

Twenty-six of the team’s 38 home dates will be played on Friday and Saturday nights

The Griffins won the franchise’s and the city’s first Calder Cup title in June by beating Syracuse four times in a seven-game series that lasted six games. The team finished its championship playoff run with a 15-9 record.

Calder Cup appearances

Fans still have two opportunities to see the Calder Cup.

The trophy will be at Uccello’s Ristorante on Friday, from 3-5 p.m., at 2630 East Beltline, and next Thursday, Sept. 19, at the Texas Roadhouse, from 5-8 p.m., at 3776 28th St. SE in Kentwood.

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