Topaz Hockey hosts its annual summer road hockey fundraiser for the Mustard Seed Street Church food bank this Saturday at Saanich Plaza in the Save-On-Foods parking lot. Facebook

Canada’s national pastime to help Victoria’s Mustard Seed

Hockey for Food festival raises money at tough time of year for local food bank

Great saves, great shots and hopefully mountains of food will be part of Topaz Hockey’s annual charity road hockey fest, Hockey for Food, this Saturday (July 8) at Saanich Plaza.

Held at a time when donations to the Mustard Seed Street Church food bank are traditionally lower, the event will see four-a-side teams do battle on the parking lot in front of Save-On-Foods between noon and 6 p.m.

“Summertime puts quite a high demand on our services,” said Lisa Warden, events and sponsorship co-ordinator for the Mustard Seed. “Kids are out of school and there are no school lunch programs running, families’ budgets are stretched and there’s a lot of demand on our services all across the board.”

Hockey for Food, formerly known as Five Hole for Food, offers a chance to lend a helping hand to people having trouble making ends meet, she added.

While a number of teams are already registered, one court will be available on a drop-in, pay-to-play basis. All proceeds from the tournament and the day go to the Mustard Seed.

Speaking of cash, money donations go further than food, as Mustard Seed is able to leverage its community partnerships and make the cash go further, Warden said. Non-perishable food donations will still be accepted on Saturday, however.

For anyone who’d like to see local police and firefighters battle for bragging rights, VicPD, including Chief Del Manak, will take on Saanich police and Victoria fire will play Saanich fire, both at 1:40 p.m., in an emergency services mini-tournament. The two winners will meet in the final immediately following.

Special guests during the day include the Super Heroes of Victoria, the 501st Rebel Legion, plus mascots Marty the Marmot, Ace the police dog and Sparky the fire dog. Tunes will be provided by DJ Vuckson and a barbecue will be available by donation.

editor@vicnews.com