charity hockey game

Montreal Canadiens alumni opponents get ready



By Ron Giofu


The Montreal Canadiens Alumni come to the Libro Centre this Saturday night and the team that will be opposing them got ready for them last weekend.

The team comprised of area residents, emergency service workers, incoming council members and town employees were on the ice last Saturday night practising for the game that is coming up this weekend. The team consists of 23 players, including two goalies, and will be coached by Dave Wharram.

Admirals co-owner Matt Fox takes a shot on town treasurer Justin Rousseau during a Saturday night practice at the Libro Centre.

“It’s a fun practice to let the guys get together and learn from each other,” said Wharram. “Everyone I talked to is excited to play against some of their childhood heroes.”

Wharram said he is a die-hard Toronto Maple Leafs fan but the Canadiens are his “next best team” so he is excited to be part of the event as well. The alumni team features players not long out of the NHL and others that have been retired for 20 years or more so it will be an “interesting” game,” Wharram believed.

The charity hockey game is being organized by the Rotary Club of Amherstburg with proceeds going to Amherstburg Community Services (ACS).

Councillor-elect Peter Courtney playfully shoots the puck towards the camera (which was behind the glass) during a Nov. 24 practice at the Libro Centre.

“The Rotary Club did a great job organizing this,” said Wharram. “It’s all for fun and for charity.”

Tickets are available at and will be available at the door, unless the game is a sell-out beforehand. Tickets are $20 each. There is a family pack (four tickets) available for $70 and $75 VIP tickets are also available.

Corey Meloche memorial hockey game to assist three-year-old in cancer fight



By Ron Giofu


Not only will Corey Meloche be remembered May 5, the fight against Mason Macri’s rare cancer will gain support.

The newly renamed Corey Meloche Memorial “Battle for Mason” Classic will be held that Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Libro Centre with proceeds benefitting Macri, a three-year-old Lakeshore boy battling a rare form of cancer known as rhabdomyosarcoma. According to a web page set up for him, he was diagnosed with the rare form of cancer April 24, 2015 after he was having difficulty urinating. His medical journey has not only included Ontario, but has seen Mason and his parents Iain and Chantelle travel to Houston for treatment.

Dan Pettypiece, assistant coach with the General Amherst girls hockey team, said the game was started as a way to memorialize Meloche and also to teach the players to give back to the community.

The General Amherst and St. Thomas of Villanova girls hockey teams face off at the Libro Centre in the annual Corey Meloche Memorial Game May 5. The photo is from last year's game. This year's game is to raise funds for three-year-old cancer patient Mason Macri.

The General Amherst and St. Thomas of Villanova girls hockey teams face off at the Libro Centre in the annual Corey Meloche Memorial Game May 5. The photo is from last year’s game. This year’s game is to raise funds for three-year-old cancer patient Mason Macri.

“We always wanted the kids to know there are sacrifices to have a program like this,” said Pettypiece. “Any time our kids on our team can give back to the community, we will. It’s good to play this great game, but realize there are sacrifices and always try to repay what has been done for you.”

The same is holding true for the St. Thomas of Villanova Wildcats, who once again will be participating in the game with General Amherst. Normally, the two teams play against each other in a friendly game but this year will see the teams have a draft and mix the teams up for the game.

Pettypiece said they always try to make money for charity through the Corey Meloche game and when he heard about Macri, he approached General Amherst head coach Scott Hamelin and Villanova head coach John Purdie about making him the recipient of this year’s fundraising.

“They were behind it 100 per cent right off the bat,” said Pettypiece.

Pettypiece said a case like Mason makes people like him feel very lucky to have the families they do and the health they have. The hope is the fundraiser can assist Mason with his medical needs and allow him to have a normal life.

“Although Mason is not from our community, there are no borders when you are fighting this disease. It’s a disease that has no borders,” said Pettypiece.

While the game has had its proceeds donated to cancer-related causes in the past, Pettypiece added this year’s proceeds will stay closer to home.

“There is a face on the project. There is a life and we want to help in any way we can,” he said.

The teams hope to have a lot of people come out that night with word not only being spread among the Amherst and Villanova communities, but also within the Lakeshore hockey community. There is no admission to watch the game, but the teams hope for a lot of donations.

“If they have a loonie in their pocket, that’s fine,” said Pettypiece. “If they want to donate more, that’s fine too.”

As the first coach of the Amherst girls team, Pettypiece said keeping Meloche’s memory alive is always something he wants to do.

“It’s always important to me for me to make sure her spirit carries on,” said Pettypiece. “The program at General Amherst has a lot to do with Corey. It took a little bit of pushing (to get the girls program launched) and she did the pushing.”

For more on Macri, visit or