by Jeff Toback, From The Mama Maven Sports Desk
In June of 1994 the New York Rangers had a mission to end their team’s anemic 54-year championship drought and win their first Stanley Cup since 1940. With guts, determination and a few lucky bounces the Blueshirts were able to hoist the magnificent silver chalice and bring the long-suffering New York fans a reason to celebrate.
Friday night at Rockefeller Center, many of those same Ranger players – and some players from years prior to their championship season – teamed up with an all-star ensemble from the Ronald McDonald House with another mission: To bring comfort to ailing children throughout New York City.
The 22nd Annual Skate with the Greats charity event to benefit Ronald McDonald House New York featured an impressive list of silent auction items including autographed packages from Rangers past and present. There were also live auctioned prizes, such as a golf outing with Rangers defenseman Brian Leetch, a zamboni ride for a lucky child at an upcoming game at Madison Square Garden, and a suite experience at a New York Knicks game.
Among the Ranger greats from the 1994 Stanley Cup Championship team that appeared included the aforementioned Brian Leetch, who also won the MVP award, all-star goaltender Mike Richter, forward Stephane Matteau, 50-goal-scorer (and all-around good guy) Adam Graves, and defenseman Jay Wells. They were joined by Ranger alumni Rod Gilbert, Ron Greschner, Nick Fotiu, Ron Duguay, Brian Mullen, Steve Vickers and others. Many of these players joined the event attendees on the Rockefeller Center ice for a skate.
They came together for a great cause. Ronald McDonald House New York provides a home-away-from-home for children battling cancer, and the family members who travel with them from all over the United States and 49 other countries. It’s through the help of supporters throughout the Tri-State area that the House has been able to provide this haven for more than thirty-five years. The Rangers participation is made possible through a partnership with the Garden of Dreams Foundation, a non-profit charity that works closely with the Rangers and all areas of Madison Square Garden to make dreams come true for children facing obstacles. Since its inception in 1994, the Skate with the Greats event has raised more than $9 million that has gone toward underwriting the cost of maintaining house operations.
According to the press release we received after the event, initial tallies from Skate with the Greats totaled $760,000.
If you would like to support Ronald McDonald House New York, contact:
Richard H. Martin
Director of Development & Acting COO
Ronald McDonald House New York
405 East 73rd Street
New York, NY 10021
I was invited with my family to this event, I was not compensated.
Editor’s Note: We are happy to support Ronald McDonald House. Check out our visit this past spring, to RMHC Long Island with Medela.