04/26/2016 12:39 PM
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Brampton Beast starting goaltender Bryan Pitton could not wipe the smile off his face this past summer when he signed on to return to his hometown of Brampton, Ontario to suit up for the Beast.
Pitton is no stranger to the hockey scene in Brampton, having played for the Ontario Hockey League’s Brampton Battalion from 2005 to 2008. Simply put, Pitton is the lifeblood of hockey in Brampton.
Bryan, proud to wear his hometown on his jersey for the first time as a professional, stood on his head during the team’s season opener, making 31 saves in a 2-1 loss to the Manchester Monarchs on October 16, 2015.
Unfortunately for Pitton, that was the only game he played for the Beast this season, as an injury forced him to the sidelines for the remainder of the 2015-16 campaign.
In the midst of a gruelling rehabilitation process to get himself back on the ice to play in front of his family and his hometown fans, Pitton looked at his situation as an opportunity to get more involved in the community that helped him evolve into the player and the gentleman that he is today, and that’s why Bryan Pitton was named the 2015-16 Brampton Beast Community Player of the Year.
Even before he suffered his injury, Pitton knew he wanted to make a mark in his community and got started right away, attending the Hydro One Brampton Employee Appreciation Day event in September, meeting and talking hockey with the employees and families of one of the Beast’s major sponsors.
From October through December, Pitton led the Canadian Tire Jumpstart Program, an eight-week program at a low-income school in Brampton. Each week, Pitton and fellow members of the Beast would meet with the students to not only teach the fundamentals of hockey but to help the children learn what it takes to be a good teammate both on and off the ice.
At the end of the Jumpstart program, the 300 students and family members that participated were invited to attend the Beast game on December 13 and helped collect 14 bags of teddy bears that were thrown onto the ice for the Beast’s annual Teddy Bear Toss, with all bears donated to Toys for Tots.
Bryan proved to be a hit with some of the more senior Beast fans on November 22 as he volunteered as the number caller for the club’s Bingo With the Beast event, where he hosted a group of over 100 seniors at the Powerade Centre prior to the Beast game, and called out the numbers and helped them enjoy their day with the Beast.
Pitton was a staple at schools around the Peel Region in Brampton and Mississauga, helping shape the minds of hundreds of local school children, while sharing stories about his upbringing in Brampton, his hockey career and also providing sound life advice.
In addition, Pitton volunteered as a Celebrity Server at the MS Society Charity Event in March of 2016 and served up some grub to the hungry patrons of Kelsey’s Restaurant. During this event, 15% of all proceeds raised from 5:00 to 9:00 PM were donated to the MS Society of Peel, where Bryan helped raise close to $700 in just a few short hours.
Pitton was never shy to whip out his Sharpie for a variety of Corporate and Community Partner Autograph Signings, helping support a plethora of organizations, including Bramtpton Minor Hockey, Hydro One Brampton and Canadian Tire.
In February, the Beast hosted an equipment drive in support of Moss Park Hockey, a low-income youth hockey league in downtown Toronto. The Beast collected a large amount of helmets, gloves and other pieces of hockey equipment and when Beast office staff was looking for someone to help deliver the multiple bags of equipment to the children at Moss Park this upcoming Wednesday, March 30th, Pitton volunteered without hesitation.
Dealing with an injury that has kept you out of the lineup all season can be a devastating experience for any professional hockey player, but Bryan Pitton looked beyond his struggle and saw an opportunity to spend more time helping his community, making him a perfect fit to be the Beast’s Community Player of the Year.
The Brampton Beast will be bringing their exciting brand of ECHL hockey back to the Powerade Centre this fall. Don’t miss a minute of the action! 2016-17 Memberships are now available, starting at $34.78 plus HST per month.
For more information or general media inquiries on the Brampton Beast please contact Chris Ballard, Public Relations Coordinator at (905) 564-1684 or email@example.com.