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Leafs host Grizzlies, and Teddy Bear Toss

When Nelson scores its first goal during Friday's KIJHL game against Revelstoke, fans are encouraged to bring a teddy bear or other stuffed animal to toss onto the ice.

The Nelson Leafs most likely won’t get the 45,650 stuffed animals tossed onto ice at the recent Hershey Bears' annual Teddy Bear Toss when the Heritage City franchise hosts its own fundraiser Friday at the NDCC Arena.

But why not think big.

Nelson plays host to defending champion Revelstoke Grizzlies in the first of two Kootenay International Junior Hockey League home games.

Saturday the Leafs, fresh from a six-game road trip which took the Murdoch Division squad through the tough Eddie Mountain Division, host Columbia Valley Rockies Saturday.

Puck drop for both games is 7 p.m.

When the Leafs score their first goal of the Friday game, fans are encouraged to through a teddy bear,  other stuffed animal or toy onto the ice.  The toys will be gathered by Leaf players and team personal before being donated to local charities.

The Leafs join numerous other hockey teams in charity fundraiser.

The first teddy bear toss occurred in Kamloops in 1993 when club’s marketing director came up with the idea. Fans tossed 2,400 bears onto the ice when Brad Lukowich scored the Blazers first goal.

The tradition has spread throughout the Canadian Hockey League with the American Hockey League’s Hershey Bears now holding the record with 45,650 stuffed toys in a single game.