Hockey Classic raises $40,000 |

Hockey Classic raises $40,000

BRECKENRIDGE – The sixth annual Summit Foundation Hockey Classic April 18-19 raised more than $40,000 through two nights of hockey games and an awards dinner with silent and live auctions.

Summit Foundation executive director Deb Edwards said the Hockey Classic series has raised about $225,000 for charitable causes and scholarships over its six years.

In the Battle of the Resorts, the Vail Resorts Americans’ “shock and awe” strategy proved successful in a 5-3 victory over the Intrawest Canucks. As usual, Vail Resorts chief executive officer and board chair Adam Aron was minding the nets.

He avenged an 8-5 loss inflicted in 2002, when he blamed jet lag for his porous work.

Vail Resorts’ victory was the third in the history of the Summit Foundation’s Hockey Classic giving it a 3-2 lead over Intrawest. The Battle of the Resorts did not begin until the second year of the classic.

As per tradition, a representative of the losing team had to wear the uncoveted toilet seat necklace. Intrawest coach and Summit Foundation board member David Barry, vice president of Intrawest Colorado, took the honors.

In the ensuing “trash” talk, Aron ribbed Barry for living in Breckenridge, not Copper Mountain. He also noted that a Copper Mountain season pass in the silent auction was suffering from a lack of bidding. Aron bid $10.

Taking his turn, Barry noted Intrawest’s Copper Mountain hit 1,060,000 skier days, topping last year’s record.

He “thanked” Vail Resorts-owned Keystone Resort for providing those skier days. According to Barry, a few years ago, Keystone had about 1.1 million skier days, and Copper had about 800,000.

Aron announced Breckenridge again had crested the 1.4 million skier day mark.

The give-and-take was pretty tame, compared to that in past years, when wheels were “stolen” from executive vehicles and sharp-edged videos were shown to spoof the competition.

In the Battle of the Badges, the Flames team of firefighters narrowly defeated the Enforcers team of police officers, 6-1.

The town of Breckenridge’s Stephen C. West Ice Arena hosted both evenings’ hockey matchups, while the Great Divide Lodge hosted the awards dinner complete with silent and live auctions.

The finale of the event was marked by the presentation of the Dr. Oliver “Stony” Stonington Spirit Award to Bonnie Smith Allen.

The Stonington award honors the late physician who retired to Breckenridge and played hockey until he was 78. He died of cancer in 1998 at the age of 82.

The David Olbright Spirit Award was given to Kevin Zygulski. Olbright was a young hockey player who died in a car wreck, also in 1998. He was a dedicated player, and his spirit helped ignite the founding of the summit Youth Hockey Association.

The Hockey Classic started in 1998 with a mixture of hockey celebrities, local players and a few never-evers who came together to raise funds for the Summit Foundation.

After the first year’s matchup between the Summit Stars and the Kingdom Komets, then-Intrawest head David Hill challenged Aron to bring their head-to-head competition to the ice, and the Rivalry of the Resorts was born. The Battle of the Badges was added in 2000 as a sort of Pumpkin Bowl on ice.

The Summit Foundation is a community public foundation dedicated to improving the quality of life for residents and guests of Summit County and neighboring communities.

The foundation has awarded more than $5 million in grants and scholarships since granting began in 1986. More than 100 nonprofits depend on the foundation, and in turn those agencies provide valuable services to this community, Edwards said.

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