Willie O'Ree, the 'Jackie Robinson of hockey,' to visit DuluthO'Ree, the first black player in National Hockey League history, will be in Duluth on April 20 for the "Pucks Against Poverty" campaign.
By: Budgeteer staff, Duluth Budgeteer News
Touted as the “Jackie Robinson of Hockey,” Willie O’Ree will visit Duluth as a way to bring attention to poverty and as a way for the community to come together for a fun event.
Last year, the “Pucks Against Poverty” campaign used a hockey puck as a symbol, and challenged community members to come up with creative ways to address the issues of poverty. This year the Community Action Duluth campaign plans to focus on children in poverty, and the need to provide pathways for them to gain access to the game the Northland loves — hockey. The National Hockey League and Community Action Duluth have teamed up to bring Willie O’Ree, the NHL’s first African-American professional hockey player, to Duluth on April 20. As the “Jackie Robinson of Hockey”, O’Ree broke the color line in hockey during the 1957-1958 season with the Boston Bruins.
Community Action Duluth is offering sponsorship opportunities for those interested in a private meet-and-greet autograph session and silent auction luncheon with O’Ree scheduled for 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, April 20, at Clyde Iron Works. The event will be hosted by the Northland NewsCenter’s Tom Hansen.
The third annual Pucks Against Poverty event will be held on April 21 from noon to 3 p.m. at the Heritage Sports Arena. The afternoon will include open skating with a select group of members from UMD men’s and women’s teams, puck painting, face painting, autographs, and the “Chuck a Puck” event.
To learn more, visit www.pucksagainstpoverty.org