Third annual PHamily Pub Night set for March 23rd

    The third annual Pandas Hockey scholarship fundraiser to take place March 23rd at Matrix Hotel

    March 7, 2018

    The third annual University of Alberta Pandas PHamily Pub Night, which celebrates the Pandas winning tradition and the connection that hockey brings to all families, as well as raises funds for the Pandas 'Home Grown Excellence' Scholarship, is set for March 23rd at the Matrix Hotel in Downtown Edmonton. 

    The event, which will highlight the 'Hockey Family', will include a hot stove segment with members of the Benning Family, including Pandas defenceman Abby Benning, Edmonton Oiler Matt Benning, and NHL Alumni and father of Matt and Abby, Brian Benning, as well as long-time NHL scout Elmer Benning. The event will also include numerous raffles and giveaways, as well as the Pandas Balloon Blitz, and will be hosted by TSN1260  broadcaster, and NHL Alumni Jason Strudwick.


    "The night is important on a number of fronts.  First and foremost, we're raising funds for athletic scholarships.  Our players work very hard to be the best they can be every day," said Pandas head coach Howie Draper. "These kinds of scholarships go a long way in giving our athletes a needed sense of security that they can focus on becoming better student-athletes and, ultimately, leaders in our community without a large financial burden holding them back."

    Since their inception in 1997, the Pandas Hockey team quickly developed into one of the best university sport programs in Canada. The Pandas have won over 550 games over their 21 seasons, a record 12 Canada West Championships, and eight U SPORTS National Championships. Graduating players have gone from the Pandas program to the international and professional level in women’s hockey, as well as become leaders and role models in the non-hockey world. One of the biggest factors in the Pandas continued success is their freedom and flexibility, thanks in large part to scholarships such as the 'Home Grown Excellence' Scholarship. 

    "Our program fosters a culture where a strong work ethic, the desire to learn and grow, mutual respect, and a commitment to team are ultimately the highest measures of success." continued Draper. "What our program has achieved over the last 21 years is a reflection of the commitment that each coach and player makes to embody those values and pass them on to those that come after us." 

    "Probably about 15 years ago or so, one of our teams came up with the PH(pandas hockey) family idea.  The team at that time felt that 'PHamily' embodied all the values that were important to the success of the program and each individual within it.  To have a family around you means that you can be who you are without judgement, that you can challenge each other to be better, that the members of your family ultimately love and care for you regardless of your imperfections or mistakes and that, when you need support, it's usually there at home." 

    Tickets for the Pandas PHamily Pub Night are still available, and can be purchased HERE. For more event info, or if you would like to donate to a Pandas Hockey scholarship, contact Howie Draper at 

    Special Thanks to the Pandas PHamily Pub Night Sponsors: 

    Symmetry Spinal Care
    Hockey Edmonton
    ATB Financial
    Pangman Development Corporation
    Big Rock Brewery
    College Copy Shop