Toronto (April 28, 2010) - Mounties, beavers, maple syrup and hockey: all iconic symbols of what makes Canada unique. The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation (PMHF) today tapped into what is at the soul of many Canadians by proudly unveiling a significant new event - Road Hockey To Conquer Cancer.

Journalist Mitch Potter described road hockey as "the recessive gene that makes us Canadian…a truly cultural phenomenon that harkens back to Canadians on the street and their memories of childhood." The Victoria Times-Colonist stated: "Ice hockey is what we watch, but road hockey is the game we actually play. The national game of Canadian mythology and Tim Hortons commercials is played on a frozen pond or a 6AM rink, but in reality, most of us spent more time, winter or summer, denting garage doors, cars and slow-moving children with tennis balls than slapping pucks off Plexiglas."

When the Pittsburgh Penguins won the Stanley Cup last spring, Sidney Crosby took the Cup home to Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia and immediately set up a road hockey game with his old neighbourhood friends. The winning team earned the right to raise the Stanley Cup, just like they had dreamed of doing so many times before. "It was like they were 12 again," chuckled Sidney's father.

"Like any other kid, I played road hockey," recalled Mark Messier, an Honoured Member of the Hockey Hall of Fame. "It was a dream for all of us to one day play in the National Hockey League for the Stanley Cup. Road hockey was one of the ways we were able to live that dream, even as kids."

Harkening back to childhood memories, The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation will stage the inaugural Road Hockey To Conquer Cancer in 2011.

The day-long fundraising event will feature multiple games for each team, with numerous non-hockey activities available for participants between games. "There'll be an all-day festival atmosphere. It'll be the 'Woodstock of road hockey!'" stated Steve Merker, Director of Business Development at PMHF. Participants can register with friends and family as a team, or individually.

"When I think of things that are truly Canadian, I think of one thing – hockey!" added Paul Alofs, PMHF's President and CEO. "Holy Mackinaw! The Princess Margaret has been fortunate to launch some incredible events but this one takes me back to when I was eight years old and some of the best memories of my life. All you need is a stick and some running shoes. Anyone can play, and it's happening right now on streets all across Canada. And by participating in Road Hockey To Conquer Cancer, players are raising research funding for The Princess Margaret, one of the top 5 cancer research centres in the world."

Mark Messier commented on Road Hockey To Conquer Cancer, stating, "It's a great idea. It's a great way to celebrate our game, a great way to have fun but more importantly, it's a great way to get together and raise money for a very important cause. Please, help Road Hockey to Conquer Cancer to help (The) Princess Margaret in its fundraising event."

ROAD HOCKEY TO CONQUER CANCER. It's coming! Are you in?!?

www.roadhockeytoconquercancer.ca

About The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation

The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation at University Health Network raises funds for breakthrough research, exemplary teaching and compassionate care at Princess Margaret Hospital and its research arm, the Ontario Cancer Institute, which now includes The Campbell Family Cancer Research Institute and The Campbell Family Breast Cancer Research Institute. More information about the Foundation can be found at www.pmhf.ca.

About Princess Margaret Hospital

Princess Margaret Hospital and its research arm, the Ontario Cancer Institute, which now includes The Campbell Family Cancer Research Institute and The Campbell Family Breast Cancer Research Institute, have achieved an international reputation as one of the top 5 cancer research centres in the world. Princess Margaret Hospital is a member of University Health Network, which also includes Toronto General Hospital and Toronto Western Hospital. All three are research hospitals affiliated with the University of Toronto.

Media Contact

Phone: 416 340 4636
Email: UHN.News@uhn.ca

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