SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Springfield Thunderbirds have announced their partnership with Rock 102 for the second annual Mayflower Marathon Night.

The event is set to take place during the Thunderbirds’ game against the Bridgeport Islanders on Wednesday, November 22 at 7:05 p.m. at the MassMutual Center.

As part of the lead-up to the event, the MassMutual Center will serve as a collection point for Mayflower Marathon canned food donations at all T-Birds home games through November 22. Donation boxes will be available in the box office lobby at the MassMutual Center and in the Thunderbirds’ front office lobby.

The Mayflower Marathon initiative extends beyond the week of November 20. On Thursday, November 16, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., four Thunderbirds players will participate in a Celebrity Bartending night at White Lion Brewing in downtown Springfield. A portion of the proceeds from sales of Thunderboom burgers, draft beer, and beer cans during the evening will benefit the Open Pantry. The T-Birds Foundation has pledged to match those proceeds.

Courtesy of Springfield Thunderbirds

The Rock 102 Morning Show hosts, Bax & Nagle, will be involved in the lead-up to the Marathon at the Thunderbirds’ game on Friday, November 17 at 7:05 p.m. against the Utica Comets. On this day, they will raffle off two signed and customized “Bax” and “Nagle” Thunderbirds jerseys, with raffle tickets available for both the November 17 and November 22 games. The winners will be announced during the Mayflower Marathon Night on November 22.

Nathan Costa, President of the Thunderbirds, expressed gratitude for the meaningful partnership with Rock 102 and the Mayflower Marathon. He said, “This time of year is highlighted by gracious acts of kindness, and we have no doubt our community will make this the best Marathon yet.”

On November 22, following their marathon broadcast from 6:00 a.m. on Monday, November 20 through 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, November 22, Bax & Nagle will be present at the game. The full marathon will be hosted at MGM Springfield near the South End Market, with the goal of filling four trailers’ worth of food donations, an increase from last year’s output of three.

Steve Nagle of Rock 102 expressed gratitude for the Thunderbirds’ partnership and its role in raising awareness of food insecurity in the region. He said, “The Open Pantry needs help more than ever, and the fans are a tremendous part of making this event such a success.”

The Mayflower Marathon has generated over $1.5 million in food and monetary donations to the Open Pantry over the past decade. In 2022, the Marathon, held at MGM Springfield and in partnership with the Thunderbirds, raised $179,514.08 in donations.

Bax from Rock 102 said, “The Open Pantry provides a variety of crucial services to the Springfield community. Having the Springfield Thunderbirds as a partner in the Mayflower Marathon shows their commitment to the community.”

To be part of the Thunderbirds’ hockey action for the 2023-24 season, fans can reserve their seats by calling (413)-739-GOAL (4625) or visiting their website.

Local News

WWLP-22News, an NBC affiliate, began broadcasting in 1953 by providing local news, network, syndicated, and local programming to western Massachusetts. Follow 22News on X @WWLP22News, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.