The Milton Youth Hockey organization celebrated its 50th anniversary on Saturday afternoon, hosting the Boston Bruins alumni team at Ulin Memorial Rink.
The B’s alums included Terry O’Reilly, Ken Hodge, Jr., Andy Brickley, the team’s television analyst on NESN, former defenseman Bob Beers, who works alongside Dave Goucher on the radio broadcasts, and Tom Songin.
The Bruins were opposed by a squad of current Milton Youth Hockey coaches, each of whom contributed $250 for the benefit game. A $5,000 donation must be made to the Boston Bruins Foundation to host an alumni game.
“We sold well over 300 tickets online, and close to another 100 from people coming up to us on the street, or calling us saying they want to buy a ticket,” said Bill Bennett, a member of the MYH’s board of directors.
The monies raised will benefit the youth hockey program, with a goal of providing more power skating sessions for the players, as well as playing the tuition for those who cannot afford to play hockey. The program will also use the money raised to send youth teams to major tournaments, a cost which can reach upwards of 2,500 dollars.
“We had raised, just from our program booklet, 10,000 dollars,” said Bennett. “Right now, we’re somewhere around 20,000 dollars with ticket sales.”
The event featured a silent auction, with a handful of memorabilia up for grabs, such as signed photos, pucks and jerseys of Bruins greats, in addition to a pair signed by MYH alum Keith Yandle, now skating for the New York Rangers.
The occasion is also serving as a showcase for Milton Youth Hockey, which hopes to impress the town enough that other programs can be run at Ulin. Curry College has managed the facility since 2010.
“The town has the opportunity to get a 25-year lease (on the rink),” said Bennett.
“We’re hoping this convinces the town to take that lease on, and run the rink for the benefit of the members of MYH, as well as everyone else in the town who just wants to come out and skate ...”
As for the action on the ice Saturday, the two teams played a pair of 30-minute halves — with the former Bruins signing autographs during the break between periods. The B’s prevailed on the scoreboard, 17-8, but regardless of the score, Milton Youth Hockey was a big winner in its 50th year.
Sammy Hurwitz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.