TAMPA, Fla. Early in each Tampa Bay Lightning home game, Elizabeth Frazier takes a moment to reflect. Play stops during the second timeout of the first period, and the crowd at Tampa Bay Times Forum meets a hero whose impact goes well beyond the ice.
This is the second year of the Lightning Community Hero Program, a philanthropic effort by Tampa Bays NHL franchise that, beginning in the 2011-12 campaign, is scheduled to distribute 10 million to grass-roots community heroes in the region over five years. Each of the Lightnings 41 home games includes a presentation of a 50,000 check awarded to a non-profit charity of the recipients choice.
Each story touches others, beyond sticks and pucks, beyond the game. Each tells of people influencing a greater good.
It just puts things in perspective, said Frazier, the Lightnings vice president of philanthropy and community initiatives. You feel the same way when you get to meet these heroes. Its like, Wow, we are able to change lives with ...