Like most events in 2020, the COVID-19 crisis put an end to Rockford IceHogs' season before the end of the regular season. 'Hogs fans missed out on some of their favorite themed nights of the year but one, the teddy bear toss.

If you have never heard of this Rockford IceHogs tradition, it is pretty spectacular to witness. The way it works is on a special night during an IceHogs' game, fans are encouraged to bring a new unwrapped plush toy to be distributed to more than 20 organizations, including area hospitals. Then, Rockford IceHogs players and staff help deliver the plush toys. Oh, the stuffed animals are tossed onto the ice after the 'Hogs first goal. In 2019, more than 4,300 bears we donated. And in 2020, the Chicago Blackhawks affiliate is hoping for an even bigger total. Yes, the teddy bear toss is STILL HAPPENING.

On Saturday, December 19, 2020, fans are encouraged to bring their plush presents to BMO Harris Bank Center in downtown Rockford, between 9 am and noon. This, too, will be a little different than years past, because #pandemic.

Like traditional Teddy Bear Toss games, fans are encouraged to bring new stuffed animals to BMO Harris Bank Center. While in their vehicles, fans will drive-thru the arena, entering through the main service doors off Main St. and onto the "ice" (arena floor), toss their stuffed animals onto the arena floor, and exit onto Chestnut St.

The Rockford IceHogs' are not strangers to supporting the community. The team is also collecting new/gently used jackets, winter hats, gloves, and mittens which will be donated to Miss Carly's Place. But, if you're not able to pop by this year's teddy bear toss, you'll still be able to put a smile on a child's face and also help a great organization.

Can’t make it on Saturday? Stop by the BMO Harris Bank Center’s Box Office between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 16, Thursday, Dec. 17 or Friday, Dec. 18 to donate the stuffed animals and winter clothes.

Read more here and ... Let's! GO! HOGS!

JB Love is ½ of  Q98.5's Lil Zim & JB In The Morning, weekday mornings from 5:00 a.m. to 10 a.m. Follow him on TwitterInstagram, and Facebook.

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