Battle of the Badges hockey game this Saturday in Madison

MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) – Madison police and firefighters will face off on the ice this weekend for a cause close to their hearts. The 5th Annual Battle of the Badges event will take place on Saturday, March 26 from 3:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at Madison Ice Arena on Forward Drive.

Prior to the MadCity Police vs. Local 311 Madison Firefighters hockey game at 5:00 p.m., there will be a free community skate from 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Doors open at 2:45 a.m.

After the main event, there will be an All Star Game at 6:30 p.m. There will also be raffles, beer and food available for purchase, in addition to the $5 admission price for everyone over 3 years old.

The event raises money for Safe Communities in Madison-Dane County. To date, Battle of the Badges has raised over $85,000 for addiction recovery programs through the organization.

“I was a firefighter for 33 years and over the past 10-15 years the rise in heroin and opioid overdoses has skyrocketed, as you have often seen in the media. Police can now help Narcan to bring people back, but that’s a problem,” said Jeff Annen, a retired Madison firefighter and captain of the Local 311 Madison Firefighters hockey team.

Annen said the event is also an opportunity for these first responders to have fun with members of the public. “We’re often hidden in cars and buildings, so it’s a chance to get out there and be part of the community that most of us live and work in,” Annen said.

The first responders and other community members who make up the hockey teams meet regularly to practice before the Battle of the Badges. It’s an opportunity to build on the connections they already have through their work.

“We never really get to say how much we appreciate the firefighters, and they don’t say how much they appreciate us either, but when we’re both on the phone, we know we have each other’s backs. mutually. So we know they’ll be there if needed,” said Ken Mulry, a Madison police officer in his 25th year on duty and MadCity Police hockey player.

Madison Police Department officials said there are also plans to hold a Battle of the Badges football game this fall at Breese Stevens Field in Madison.

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Catherine J. Martinez