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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Purple will literally be the name of the game on Friday, March 7 when the Griffins host their third annual Purple Community ® Game to benefit Van Andel Institute (VAI) and cancer research.

When fans arrive for the 7 p.m. battle against the Iowa Wild, they will step into the battle against cancer as nearly everything at Van Andel Arena will be in sync with the color associated with cancer survivors, including:

•    Purple accented jerseys that will be worn by the Griffins, autographed and auctioned to the public in the Intermission Restaurant & Bar after the game, with proceeds benefiting VAI;
•    Purple concession items such as beer, cotton candy, slushies, and donuts;
•    Purple VAI logos embedded in the arena’s ice surface;
•    Purple game production elements, including songs, videos and LED graphics.

Fans attending the game can become a member of Purple Community, VAI's grassroots fundraising program which connects individuals who are passionate about fighting cancer and other diseases with the resources needed for action. Free purple gear is available for fans who register to become a member of Purple Community, as well as a Purple Community photo booth located on the concourse for all fans. The first intermission activities will be hosted by Maranda of WOTV4’s “Where You Live”.

The game will kick off with a ceremonial puck drop by Ethan Miller, a 14-year-old resident of Caledonia, Mich., who is fighting Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Joining Miller will be longtime Griffins goal judge Harold “Doc” Pierce, who is battling throat cancer. Together, the two will illustrate the idea that cancer affects people of all ages and walks of life.

Fans who would like to attend the game and support fundraising for cancer research can purchase a “Purple Pack” for $25, which includes a lower bowl seat, a 2014 Griffins Purple Community Game t-shirt and the opportunity to be part of an on-ice human purple ribbon with a Griffins player for a commemorative photo following the game. A portion of the funds from every “Purple Pack” sold will be donated to Van Andel Institute. Tickets are available at Fans who already have tickets to the game but would still like a purple t-shirt and the chance to participate in the on-ice photo can click here.

The Griffins have decked out their web site, Facebook page and their Official Twitter and Game Day Twitter accounts to call attention to this special night. Fans are encouraged to change their profile picture to the Purple GameTM badge and wear purple to the game in support of the cause.

Click here to watch the video from last year’s Purple Game.

Established by Jay and Betty Van Andel in 1996, Van Andel Institute is an independent research organization dedicated to preserving, enhancing and expanding the frontiers of medical science, and to achieving excellence in education by probing fundamental issues of education and the learning process. This is accomplished through the work of over 200 researchers in more than 20 on-site laboratories and in collaborative partnerships that span the globe.

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Grand Rapids Griffins
130 West Fulton Suite 111
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
(616)774-4585 (800)2-HOCKEY

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