The Fargo Force hosted their fourth annual Hometown Heroes Night, courtesy of Cross Insulation, on Saturday, January 21st versus the Lincoln Stars in front of 4,172 fans at Scheels Arena.
The annual promotion helped to raise just over $28,000 in total, which is an increase of $11,000 from the 2015-16 season. The money was raised through sponsorships, a jersey auction, portions of Hometown Heroes merchandise sales, chuck-a-puck contest, free will donations, money back on single game tickets sold and a benefit lunch put on by Meats by John & Wayne in Fargo during the afternoon that day. The full $28,000 will be donated back to local hometown hero organizations for life saving equipment, supplies and training.
This season, the decision was made to keep the money local in efforts to help provide equipment, supplies and training for organizations that help to save lives and protect West Fargo, Fargo, Moorhead and surrounding communities. Organizations within a 15-mile radius to Scheels Arena were able to apply for the funds (up to $5,000 each) that would be raised during the game. A committee made up of local law enforcement, military members, EMT, firefighter, and members of the Cross Insulation and Fargo Force staff, voted to select the top organizations to receive the funds.
With over $28,000 to donate, six different organizations were able to be selected to receive funds. The following organizations were selected:
1. The West Fargo Police Department received $5,000 towards the purchase of a ballistic shield.
2. Glyndon Rescue received $5,000 towards the purchase of communication radios for their team.
3. Horace Fire and Rescue Department received $5,000 towards the purchase of life saving equipment, supplies and gear for their team.
4. Mapleton Volunteer Fire Department received $5,000 towards the purchase of bunker gear.
5. West Fargo Fire Department received $5,000 towards the purchase of a new thermal imager for one of their fire engines.
6. The remaining $3,321 will be donated to Valley Water Rescue to be put towards upgrading their underwater sonar unit that is used in underwater searches.
In addition to the funds raised, the night included multiple branches that had booths around the concourse where they gave away promotional items and there were 200 tickets donated back to local military families. For the pre-game show, a special video shout out from Fargo Police Chief Dave Todd played on the video boards thanking the community for their support over the last year, a giant flag was displayed on the ice for the National Anthem and there was a special ceremonial puck drop where the puck was brought down by the North Dakota Army National Guard’s rappel team, which rappelled from the ceiling directly onto the ice in front of the penalty box. The team wore the specialty jerseys that were auctioned off after the game and also wore custom painted helmets that were donated back to sponsors who helped with Hometown Heroes.
The Fargo Force hope to have information released in the coming weeks on how to sign up to request funds for next season’s Hometown Heroes game. Stay tuned to the website for that information.