Howe gives back to community organizations through jersey raffle

Michael Oleksyn (L to R) Tanner Howe and Brian Connolly with the autographed jersey and the winning ticket following the jersey raffle at the Legion on Sunday.

Regina Pats forward Tanner Howe found a way to give back to his hometown of Prince Albert through a jersey raffle with proceeds going to both the Royal Canadian Legion and Jumpstart.

The final raffle was hosted on Father’s Day at the Legion Branch and former Legion President Wayne Goldsworthy, who lives in Saskatoon, had his name drawn by Howe.

The raffle raised a total of $790 and the proceeds were split between the two organizations. The concept came from Howe’s grandfather Brian Connolly. Howe said both Jumpstart and the Legion are good for the community.

“Brian kind of brought it up to me, and I thought that that’d be a nice thing to do for the community,” Howe said. “They do so much for a lot of people. Obviously, Jumpstart is a big thing and it helps young kids out if they don’t have all that stuff to do.

“The Legion is obviously really good for community,” he added. “My grandpa helps out a lot around here, so just help them out a lot.”

Howe spent much of the year in Regina as a linemate of consensus NHL Number One pick for 2023 Connor Bedard. The team played in front of large crowds throughout the season.

“It’s fun to play with all of those sold-out crowds,” he said. “It is fun and yeah I think it’ll help out a lot, being in those big crowds. (It’s) almost NHL crowds down in Calgary there.”

Howe said losing Bedard will be hard for the team, but he hopes to pick up some slack.

“Losing him would be a big loss, obviously. He has done so much for the team. I think I can kind of try and take over and try to do my best that way,” Howe said.

Legion President Rick Hodgson received the cheque for $395 from Howe and was thankful to receive such support.

“For the Legion, it means a lot, especially locally and thanks to Brian, Tanner’s Grandpa to pick the Legion for a place to do something like this,” Hodgson said. “It was an idea he had coming into the winter and he took it and he got Tanner to sign a jersey.”

Hodgson said it’s important to support both organizations.

“Giving half to Legion and half to Jumpstart was good for the whole city, and to have a local boy like that and the things that went through with just the jersey was beautiful,” Hodgson said.

No representative from Jumpstart was available to attend the event.

Connolly explained that he chose Jumpstart because of their support for youth in sports

“They do a lot of programs for youth to get into sports,” he explained. “Some of them, they don’t have the resources or the finances, the equipment, stuff like that. That’s what Jumpstart is and that’s why I picked them.”

Connolly said he was proud of Howe for supporting the community. All he had to do to get the autographed jersey was to ask Howe.

The raffle began in February at the Legion, but Connolly thought Father’s Day was a great day to end it.

“I wanted to give it a long period of time, because I knew that Father’s Day is a good choice,” Connolly said.