Rochester Americans trade in helmets for elf ears

December 18, 2018 04:14 AM

The Rochester Americans took a break from their normal practice schedule and traded in their helmets for elf ears on Monday. 

Players and team personnel visited the Golisano Children's Hospital and Unity Hospital to spread some holiday cheer to the patients.


The team spent time hanging out and playing holiday bingo, but also distributed toys and gifts that were collected through the Pirate Toy Fund. 

"Being here around Christmas time and seeing them get some gifts is great for us and obviously we hope it's an exciting time for them," says Amerks forward Kyle Criscuolo. "These kids are going through a lot, for us to come in here and try to make their day and make them smile, I think it goes a long way. We're really lucky to be able to do what we do, so I think coming here is the least we can do."

"Seeing kids running out of their beds and doing the treatments they need to do in order to get to these events, that's what its all about," says Johanna Jennings of the Golisano Children's Hospital.

After the visits to the hospitals, the Amerks continued their day of giving at the Ronald McDonald house, where the team prepared dinner for the current residents. 

"No family wants to be here for the holidays, so anything we can do to help them feel the Christmas spirit during the holiday season. Just having the opportunity to give back and see the smiles on their faces is what this is all about," adds Amerks defenseman Nathan Paetsch.

The team is also extending their holiday charity efforts into this weekend's home games.

Fans are encouraged to bring a new, unwrapped toy Friday or Saturday to benefit the Pirate Toy Fund, and to spread a little more holiday cheer.


Breland Moore

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