SHERWOOD PARK, AB – In a month of November which the Crusaders managed an 8-3 record, the organization still found themselves in a hairy situation.
At the onset of the season, the Crusaders made a commitment to highlight different causes or charities as often as possible throughout 2016/2017. While successful throughout the year, November saw the Crusaders take their charitable contributions through the roof with the Movember initiative, a project dedicated towards fighting men’s cancer and mental health issues.
“Movember is always a fun time of the year. We get to see how creative the guys can get with their mustaches, and the best part is it's all for a good cause,” said Crusaders head coach Adam Manah on the initiative. Elaborated Taylor Medak, the Crusaders long time broadcaster, “”The team has gotten involved with the Movember campaign the last few years, but in 2016 took it to a whole new level.”
Buoyed by the presence of a $100 gift card to Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse for funds raised, the Crusaders went over and above in their efforts to “Grow their Mo’s” for men’s health. Patches of facial hair began to appear on the Cru’s upper lips from day one. (Some quicker than others!)
While the Crusaders waged an epic battle against men’s cancers, they certainly didn’t do so alone. Both the Drayton Valley Thunder and the Spruce Grove Saints joined their Viterra North Division counterpart in the upper lip showdown, the latter of which culminated in the Movember series, a set of back-to-back games between the Crusaders and their cross-town rivals. During both Crusaders/Saints games held on November 18th and 19th, the squads competed for donations in a jersey bet. Both teams opened their Arena’s for only $5, with anything over and above admission price donated directly to the Movember initiative. The stakes? Never higher, as the losing organization’s mascot would be forced to wear the opposing team’s jersey at the next scheduled home game.
“The campaign was even more successful due to the wager made with the Crusaders cross town rivals the Spruce Grove Saints. I'll be looking forward to seeing Bernard at the first game between the two clubs in 2017-18 at the Grant Fuhr Arena, wearing a Crusaders sweater,” said Medak of the series
When it was all said and done, the Crusaders raised an astounding $10,196 for the Movember Foundation, placing in the top 125 across Canada for the event – something they’re planning on doing again next season.
Story by Spencer Love