Dallas Stars
Source: CBS Texas

The NHL team the Dallas Stars are stepping up to focus on helping their community in big ways.

Dallas Stars Helping Kids

The former professional hockey player Al Montoya made history as the first Cuban-American to play in the NHL, and he now serves as the Dallas Stars Vice President of Cultural Growth and Strategy. In this role, Montoya is trying to use the Stars to promote hockey both locally and around the world.

“We just came back from a trip to Mexico City and we will be going back there soon,” Montoya told NBC DFW. “For us, that’s really an opportunity to really show what we’ve been doing and get our message across.”

This message is that hockey is a game that everyone can enjoy, and Montoya and the Stars players are passionate about spreading it wherever they can.

That’s why they launched the Learn to Play program, which is a six-week program for fifty children between the ages of four and ten in Mexico City. It started in April, and the kids are set to graduate from it later this month.

Find out more about this in the video below.

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Dallas Stars Helping Kids Locally As Well

Montoya and the Stars are making efforts to help kids locally in Dallas as well. The team has collaborated with the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Dallas on the free Future Stars initiative, which introduces hockey at schools and facilities across the region. Between 2023 and 2024 alone, this initiative grew from two locations to nine, introducing kids in underserved Texas communities to the greatness of hockey.

The Dallas Stars are currently in the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs against the Colorado Avalanche. On Tuesday night, the Stars lost game 1 in overtime by a score of 4-3, and their next game is set to take place on Thursday night at 9:30.

The team has said that being in the Stanley Cup Playoffs has given them a major boost in both fan engagement and community outreach. This has also increased the success of the fundraising efforts of the 50/50 raffle at their home games. Fifty percent of what is raised goes to the Dallas Stars Foundation, which tries to improve the lives of North Texan children through Youth Hockey.

Find out more about what the Dallas Stars have been doing to help others in the video below.

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Outreach Is A Major Focus For The Stars

As The Stars headed into the NHL season in October of last year, Montoya made it clear that outreach would be a huge focus for the team in the coming months.

“It’s a big part of my job to make sure that our crowds are indicative of the community that the Dallas Stars plays in front of,” he explained to NBC DFW. “The Hispanic community is a big part of that outreach.”

For Montoya, this cause is personal, as he grew up typically being the “only Hispanic kid” in the locker room.

“The same thing when I turned pro, whether it was on the ice or in the office, not seeing much representation,” he said. “Now look at what we have done.”

Watch Montoya talk more about this in the video below.

It’s great to see a professional sports team doing so much to help others both locally and internationally. In the end, other professional teams in any sports should take notice of what the Dallas Stars are doing and start trying to replicate their efforts!

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