It was off the ice and into the heat as Predator Ridge Golf Resort hosted 44 NHL players for the 23rd annual National Hockey League Players Association Summer Classic charity golf tournament Thursday afternoon.
“It’s all about having fun, being with the guys and showing off the Okanagan and beautiful Predator Ridge,” said Ottawa Senators’ forward and Vernon native Curtis Lazar.
Lazar got a new set of clubs this year and after a few rounds with them he says the 9-iron feels best in his hands.
The NHLPA Golf Classic started in 1993 and has raised over $3.2 million for various charities.
For Columbus Blue Jackets’ left winger, Scott Hartnell, it was his second time attending the classic.
“It’s always great getting out to these events to give back to charities,” said Hartnell, who claims his golf game is sporadic and inconsistent at times. He brought teammate Cam Atkinson out for the event.
The tourney will generate $100,000 for various charities as chosen by the NHL players
The event was a charity challenge with four captains: Shane Doan, David Booth, Andrew Ference and Hartnell. The top team donated $40,000 to a charity of their choice. Second place donated $30,000, third donated $20,000 and fourth donated $10,000.
For some players, it was the first time on the links this summer.
The Arizona Coyotes’ captain, Doan, has been a busy dad this offseason with four kids, but was excited to get on the course with his friends.
“Being from the Interior, it’s nice for the NHLPA to come out and bring all these players out to help the community and a lot of charities,” said Doan.
The two-day event wraps up Friday with the Community Celebration at Kal Beach from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Community Celebration will benefit the Vernon Jubilee Hospital Foundation.
It is a family-friendly event with hockey equipment donations, stand-up paddleboarding races, live music by Andrew Allen and plenty of opportunities for autographs.