Fans of the Hershey Bears participated in the Teddy Bear Toss and threw 45,650 stuffed bears on the ice after a first-period goal. All the bears will be donated to children at local charities. The Hershey Bears owned the previous record of 34,798, which it set last year. Before that, Calgary of the Western Hockey League held the record set in 2015.
Hershey fans began tossing the stuffed animals onto the ice after Christian Djoos’ goal against Hartford; Hershey won in overtime 4-3. The idea is simple: Bring a stuffed animal to the hockey game (many minor league teams do it) and toss it on the ice when the home team scores its first goal. The lovable toys are then distributed to children at local charities, oftentimes with players doing the handing out.
As good as it sounds, it’s even better in action.
Armed with tons of stuffed animals, Hershey Bears fans had to wait 8 minutes and 11 seconds Sunday night before they could unload their furry fury onto the ice below. But what a moment it was. A spokesperson for the Bears says it took about 30 minutes to clean up all the stuffed joy on the ice. (And another 10 to do a dry scrape of the ice with the Zamboni.)
After that, the Bears got back to the business of hockey. And not only was it a great night for stuffed animals, but it also was a great night for the Bears, who defeated the Hartford Wolf Pack in overtime, 4-3.