HARTFORD, March 16, 2011:  Whalers Sports & Entertainment announced today that the Connecticut Whale’s home game this Saturday, March 19 at the XL Center will be preceded by the first annual “Guns & Hoses Cup”, to benefit the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA).

CT WhaleThe Guns and Hoses Cup will feature personnel from numerous Connecticut police and fire departments taking to the ice against each other, with faceoff at 4:30 PM.  The Whale and the Providence Bruins do battle in AHL action at 7:00 PM on March 19.

“Many of the gentlemen who are going to be playing in the event have been playing hockey for several years, and to play on the XL Center ice surface is really going to be a treat for a lot of these guys,” said East Hartford firefighter Tim George, who has been the driving force behind organizing the event with the Whale.  “I think that’s one of the reasons why there is such a draw for people to participate in the event.

“And for it to be more than just a bunch of 40-year-old kids that were going to have fun playing on the ice surface, we decided to do it as a charity event, and that’s how we got the MDA involved.  Once we found out we could have the opportunity to play on the XL Center ice surface before a Whale game, it just seemed like a natural fit that we would incorporate that into it, as a fund-raiser to raise money for a good cause.  That’s what we’re all about all the time, trying to take care of people, help our communities and at the same time give back wherever we can.”

The police team will be comprised of players from the police departments of Farmington (led by Police Chief Paul Melanson), Hartford, Middletown, Rockville, Rocky Hill, Newington and West Hartford.  The fire team consists predominantly of East Hartford firefighters.

Tickets for the Guns & Hoses Cup can be purchased on-line at www.CTHeroescup.com for $20 each, and 50% of that goes to benefit MDA.  Those benefit tickets also include admission to the Whale/P-Bruins game.  Whale season seat-holders can receive free admission to the police-fire game by presenting their Whale season ticket at the gate.

Fans are encouraged to arrive early for the Guns & Hoses Cup game, as pregame festivities include presentation of the Colors by an honor guard, a live performance of the National Anthem and a ceremonial puck drop.  Following the game there will be a trophy presentation to the winning team.

Tickets for all 2010-11 Whale home games are available now at the XL Center box office, through Ticketmaster Charge-by-Phone at 1-800-745-3000 and on-line at www.ctwhale.com.  Tickets start at $7 each at the XL Center ticket office on game day.

For information on Whale ticket packages, group sales and VIP packages, call (860) 728-3366.