President of the Utica Comets Robert Esche, along with Howard Dolgon of the Syracuse Crunch, Tom Mitchell of the Binghamton Devils and Rob Minter of the Rochester Americans, announced today that the Comets, along with the Syracuse Crunch, Binghamton Devils and Rochester Americans, have joined forces as part of the New York Hockey Gives Blood initiative, which will take place on Friday, April 17 from noon to 6 pm. The four New York State American Hockey League teams have partnered with the American Red Cross and will convert a location in each team’s city – the Adirondack Bank Center, Upstate Medical University Arena and the Christ Episcopal Church – into blood drives. Rochester’s location will be announced at a later time. With their buildings open and the AHL season currently suspended, the Comets, Crunch, Devils and Americans decided to join forces to use their resources to help New York State maintain a healthy blood supply for hospital patients and shed light on one of the ways our communities can help.
“We’re honored to use our combined resources and collaborative efforts to play a small part during these trying times,” said Comets President Robert Esche. “But more importantly, it is our goal that similar venues can make use of their resources in similar fashions. AHL venues exist as the ideal spaces that can adhere to the challenges that come with social distancing.”
The Red Cross is grateful to the donors who have already given blood and made upcoming appointments, allowing them to meet immediate patient needs. However, during this uncertain time, eligible donors are encouraged to keep scheduled blood donation appointments and make new blood donation appointments for the weeks ahead to ensure a stable supply throughout this pandemic. The American Red Cross is excited to be able to hold events at such large venues during these times of need, especially during an unprecedented period in our society where social distancing is at the forefront of everyone’s minds.
Each AHL market encourages all healthy individuals to consider taking part in this charitable event, and to do so by signing up at redcrossblood.org, entering sponsor code “Utica” (“Syracuse” and “Binghamton,” respectively) and choosing a donation time. Individuals can also register via phone at 1-800-RED CROSS or via the Blood Donor app. Utica-based donors will also receive a Comets pin for their generosity.
Adirondack Bank Center
400 Oriskany St W
Utica, NY 13502
Upstate Medical University Arena
515 Montgomery St
Syracuse, NY 13202
Christ Episcopal Church
10 Henry St
Binghamton, NY 13901