Hockey: Sock monkeys, garden gnomes on IceHogs’ promotional calendar

By Doug Halberstadt
Sports Columnist

It was just about this time a month ago I started getting the serious itch for the start of the NFL season. I’m guessing Rockford IceHogs fans are starting to get that same feeling right about now. The 2011-2012 American Hockey League (AHL) season is less than a month away.

The ’Hogs will drop the puck on their new campaign Saturday, Oct. 8, against the Grand Rapids Griffins at 7:05 p.m. at the BMO Harris Bank Center (formerly the MetroCentre). The following evening, they will be in Peoria to take on the Rivermen in a 5 p.m. game.

The ’Hogs recently announced their promotional schedule for the upcoming season. It will start with a magnet schedule for every fan who attends the home opener.

Some new giveaways on the 2011-2012 promotional schedule include IceHogs Aprons courtesy of Pig Pit Nov. 6, Sock Monkey Giveaway Night sponsored by BMO Harris Bank Feb. 25, 2012, and Hammy Garden Gnomes March 31, 2012.

Several popular giveaways are returning this season as well, including Baseball Hats (Oct. 29) from Pepsi, Youth Jerseys (Dec. 30) brought to you by Rockford Orthopedic, Fleece Blankets (Feb. 11, 2012) and Beach Towels (March 30, 2012).

Bobbleheads are back, and the IceHogs will feature two this season. Dec. 17 is scheduled for Rob Klinkhammer Bobblehead Night presented by U.S. Cellular, and March 23, 2012, is set for Ted Dent Bobblehead Night sponsored by BMO Harris Bank.

Other giveaway nights include Snow Globes (Dec. 10) presented by the Rockford Park District and Rock Valley Culligan Water Bottle Night (March 23, 2012).

Special theme nights in 2011-12 include the first-ever IceHogs Alumni Game Nov. 12 when they take on the Chicago Blackhawks Alumni, presented by Dental Dimensions; Pink In The Rink Night, benefiting Breast Cancer Research, Jan. 28, 2012; and the 13th Annual Jersey Auction Night March 11, 2012.

Taco Bell Dollar Days is back for the upcoming season. Every Tuesday and Wednesday home game at the BMO Harris Bank Center will feature $1 Bud Selects, Vienna Beef Hot Dogs, Pepsi Products and companion tickets.

Additional promotions will be announced when they are finalized.

Tickets for the 2011-12 regular season go on sale tomorrow (Thursday, Sept. 15) at the BMO Harris Bank Center’s Box Office beginning at noon and by phone at (815) 968-5222. Tickets will be available on the web through beginning at 9 a.m.

Doug Halberstadt can be reached via e-mail at

From the Sept. 14-20, 2011, issue

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