Most NHL players — those who haven’t gone to Europe, and those who can’t play in the AHL — aren’t allowed to play hockey right now. That doesn’t mean they can’t still do the off-ice good they normally do.
The inaugural Brad Richards Foundation Wines of the World event at the Hotel Chantelle in New York is scheduled for Oct. 2 at 7 p.m.
According to Richards’ web site brichards19.com, the foundation exists to provide exceptional experiences and treatment for children and families enduring chronic and life threatening illness. The foundation also supports pediatric hospitals, kids with cancer, and the advancement of youth and amateur sports. The focus of the cause is on Richards’ hometown, Prince Edward Island, as well as his two most recent NHL stops Dallas and New York.
We had a chance to chat with Richards about the event via email this week.
He was asked what the foundation means to him.
“Everything,” Richards said. “It is about family, friends and giving back. the foundation was started as a way to remember and honor my cousin who passed away at age 7 1/2 years old of brain cancer.”
Richards said that, being a wine lover, he chose the “wines of the world” tasting event for the fund-raiser. It will include a silent auction.
“We will have a room with a silent auction, and a nice party scene on the downstairs level,” Richards said. “I wanted to do something fun in NY, something to show a little of who I am off the ice, and a chance to meet some people I would not necessarily get to meet.
“I was fortunate to have some great opportunities as a kid. This is my way of giving other kids those opportunities. A chance to give back to kids who are going through a tough time, to help some people out and to do something meaningful in NY as a Ranger player.”
Though many of his teammates are scattered all over the world during the lockout, Richards hopes some will lend a hand and support. Mostly, he hopes to meet Rangers fans who want to help.
“Of course,” Richards said. “That is why we do stuff like this. Usually we are on the other side of the glass. This gives me a chance to meet people that I typically do not get a chance to connect with.”
Tickets are $300 and $600 (for VIP access, including a special pre-party event) and still available. To buy tickets, or to donate in another way, go to brichards19.com.Or click here.
AP photo, above.