Knighthawks support veterans

Local News

The Rochester Knighthawks will host the Buffalo Bandits on Military Appreciation Night at the Blue Cross Arena this Saturday, January 26 at 8:00 p.m.

All military members, veterans and reservists can get one complimentary ticket to the game by presenting their military ID at the Blue Cross Arena Box Office. A portion of proceeds from the National Lacrosse League game will benefit Rochester’s Veterans Outreach Center.

VOC Executive Director Laura Stradley, Knighthawks Director of Communications Craig Rybczynski, and Knighthawks defenseman Brad Gillies discussed the annual fundraiser Tuesday during News 8 at Noon.

“It’s our biggest night of the year,” said Rybczynski. “It’s a night to honor the men and women of our military. We have members of all five branches there. We have a big military auction that’s going on. The Buffalo Bandits and the Rochester Knighthawks will be wearing special military-themed jerseys with the net proceeds going to Veterans Outreach Center. We have a Congressional Medal of Honor winner that will be doing the Ceremonial Face Off, Gary Beikirch, so it should be a fantastic evening!”

This will be the fifth Military Appreciation Night. “It’s an honor getting to put these military-themed jerseys on and this year we’ll be representing the Navy, so it always adds extra fuel to the fire getting to throw that jersey on and getting to play in front of these men and women,” said Gillies.

Partnerships like this one with the Knighthawks helps veterans with a variety of needs through Veterans Outreach Center. “We’re so appreciate to the Knighthawks for supporting us year after year,” said Stradley. “This year we are super excited. We’re going to be renovating our homeless shelters. We’ve been talking about that for a couple of years now really, but spring is going to be groundbreaking for renovation and the Knighthawks partnership to support us through all of this is instrumental.”

Over the last four years, the Knighthawks have donated about $45,000 to the VOC. “We’re real close to that $50,000 plateau,” noted Rybczynski. “So if we can get there, or we can exceed it, that would be fantastic!”

For more information about the game call (585) 454-HAWK or visit

For more information about Veterans Outreach Center visit

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