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Charity game unites local hockey players, cancer survivors

Richmond Hockey Fights Cancer's players and members live by the creed: “We skate for those we love, for those we lost and for those who remind us daily why we fight," according to the organization's founder and president Lee Stryker.

That message was on full display when the RHFC held its seventh annual Hockey for Hope charity hockey game June 18.

The game, which took place at Skatenation Plus at the Short Pump Town Center, pitted the RHFC team against a team of Virginia All-Stars made up of members of the Henrico Firefighters, the Sperry Maine Hockey Club of Charlottesville and other local charity organizations.

While the game was the main attraction, it was not the only source of entertainment that RHFC had to offer the people in attendance.

Throughout the evening, a wide variety of items donated by the National Hockey League (NHL) were auctioned off by the RHFC, including a puck autographed by Mario Lemieux and a hockey stick autographed by members of the Buffalo Sabres.

All of the proceeds from the game will be donated to several cancer-related charities, most notably the NHL’s Hockey Fights Cancer, the American Cancer Society, and the Mario Lemieux Foundation.

“We always pride ourselves that we donate almost all of the money raised to people and groups in need of assistance,” Stryker said.

The game not only raised money for the fight against cancer, but also brought together hockey players, people who have been affected by cancer, or, in Bill Lipchak’s case, some who both love the game of hockey and have survived cancer.

“I think the biggest thing that Hockey for Hope allows me to do is [not only] participate in a sport that I have been involved in for over 22 years as a coach, parent and player, [but] it’s also a great opportunity to skate in a game with other players who share my feelings and sentiments [about fighting and getting rid of cancer]” said Lipchak, vice president of RHFC and an eight-year cancer survivor.

RHFC Team Captain and Board of Directors member Robert Rossi shared Lipchak’s and Stryker’s enthusiasm for the event.

“I gladly volunteered to help for the second annual Hockey for Hope and quickly became enamored with what [the RHFC] was doing, and I have been with them ever since,” Rossi said.

Community

Lions Club donates backpacks to elementary school

The Richmond West Breakfast Lions Club (based in western Henrico) recently donated 59 backpacks to the Westover Hills Elementary School on Jahnke Road.

Above, club members display some of the backpacks prior to their distribution. > Read more.

Glen Allen student to perform at Carnegie Hall

Thanks to a first-place win in The American Protege International Vocal Competition 2014, Glen Allen High School student Matija Tomas will travel to New York City to perform at Carnegie Hall in December.

At the first-place winners recital in Weill Hall, Matija will perform Giacomo Puccini’s opera aria, “Chi il bel sogna di doretta.” She will perform with other vocalists from around the world and have the opportunity to win other awards and scholarships.

Locally, Thomas has performed with Richmond’s renowned Glorious Christmas Nights, Christian Youth Theatre, and WEAG’s Urban Gospel Youth Choir. > Read more.

Gayton Baptist Church dedicates new outreach center


The John Rolfe YMCA and Gayton Baptist Church have partnered in an effort to bring greater health and wellness opportunities to the community.

Through this partnership, the John Rolfe Y will run Youth Winter Sports programs, including basketball and indoor soccer, in Gayton’s newly renovated $5.5 million outreach center that features a new gymnasium, youth and teen space, social space with café, meeting space and full service commercial kitchen. > Read more.

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Entertainment

Film industry training program planned for this weekend

The Community College Workforce Alliance (CCWA), in partnership with the Virginia Film Office, will offer "Get Your Start in the Film Industry," a two-day seminar designed to prepare workers for film, television and commercial projects in Virginia. The course will be held Oct. 4-5 at the Workforce Development and Conference Center, 1651 Parham Road in Henrico, on the campus of J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College.

The training will be taught by Gary Romolo Fiorelli, an accomplished assistant director for film and television projects, which include the television series Sons of Anarchy and ABC’s current drama Mistresses. > Read more.

The Boathouse to open at Short Pump Town Center

The Boathouse restaurant will open at Short Pump Town Center in the spring, its third location in the region.

“People have asked us to come to the West End for years,” said owner Kevin Healy. “When the opportunity arose, we knew had to jump on it.”

The new restaurant will be located in a 5,800-square-foot space under the Hyatt House Hotel at the town center and will include a large outdoor patio. > Read more.

Getting a ‘mouf’-ful

Boka Kantina exceeds its strong food truck reputation
Already a fan of Boka fare from outdoor events with the Tako Truck, I was delighted to learn of the new restaurant, and eager to see if its reputation held up after putting down brick-and-mortar roots.

Would the food lose its zest if I wasn’t enjoying it in the great outdoors? Would it seem pedestrian served from an ordinary kitchen instead of a truck?

Would the tacos be less satisfying as an antidote to normal lunch hunger – instead of being ingested to stave off desperate hunger after a long afternoon of crowds, sun, and tedious lines? > Read more.

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