The Teddy Bear Toss is a grand tradition in Canadian minor league hockey, especially in Calgary where last week the junior league Hitmen were showered with thousands of stuffed animals for charity after scoring their first goal of the night.
Fans eager to toss the toys battled anticipation for 38 minutes until the first goal was scored. It then took 20 minutes for all of the 25,303 bears to be collected from the ice, the second-most in franchise history.
The Hitmen will distribute the plush toys to more than 50 hospitals and children’s agencies.
Since 2003, the Hitmen have collected 186,613 bears for sick and needy kids.
(WATCH 2 views of the teddy bear toss, from up high, or rinkside, and read more from the Calgary Herald)
Here’s a view of the Toss from right next to the ice: