Dream Kid, Phoenix, and Chubby at the Checkers game

Dream Kid, Phoenix, and Chubby at the Checkers game


The Charlotte Checkers are a minor league hockey team, but a major league supporter of Dream On 3! This AHL affiliate of the Carolina Hurricanes has hosted Dream On 3 Dream Kids for the past 4 years and we are thrilled to have them as a continued member of our huddle in 2019!

Our Day Dream program allows children (ages 5-21), who are local to the Charlotte area and living with life-altering conditions, the opportunity to experience a sporting event – VIP-style! Originally created to complement our Dream Experiences, the Day Dream program has grown tremendously in popularity due to the basic fact that DO3 is able to serve many more children at a local event. On Saturday, March 16, we were thrilled to host approximately 300 children referred to us by our healthcare partners. For the Checkers event, our partners included:

  • InReach NC
  • The Arc of North Carolina
  • Developmental Disabilities Resources
  • Jeff Gordon Children’s Hospital
  • Levine Children’s
  • St. Jude Affiliate Clinic at Novant Health Hemby Children’s Hospital
  • A Small Miracle
  • Cardinal Innovations
 Dream Kids, Tyrus and Tyrell, and their family

Dream Kids, Tyrus and Tyrell, and their family


Once our special Day Dream guests arrived at Bojangles Coliseum, the DO3 team welcomed them to the game with special gifts… foam fingers (3 fingers, of course), DO3 bandannas and bracelets, plus candy and tattoos galore! From there, the kiddos received their tickets and were free to enjoy warm-ups and the game. Our referral partners identified some of the attendees to receive, what we call, a “Special Opp”. Those fun activities included the opportunity to:

  • Watch warm-ups from the penalty box (Man, these guys are limber!))
  • Conduct a ceremonial puck drop to start the game (Go Checkers!)
  • Give players a “high five” in the High 5 Tunnel (Whoo hoo!)
  • Ride the Zamboni during intermission (Bucket list – CHECK!)
 Dream Kid Kurt enjoys the hockey game

Dream Kid Kurt enjoys the hockey game


We are certain that the Dream Kids enthusiasm and excitement (there was tons of cheering, dancing, and hollering) helped contribute to a Checkers win with a final score of 3-1 over the Rochester Americans.

Partnering with local organizations to create a special Day Dream experience is very dear to the mission of Dream On 3. We are thrilled to help facilitate these memorable experiences for wonderful children, and their families, in the Charlotte area. A huge thank you to all of our sponsors, partners, and of course, the Charlotte Checkers for creating this Day Dream come true!

Photos taken by Emby Taylor Photography.
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