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No spectators, but 11 Day Power Play continues to raise money

Coronavirus restrictions made it impossible for organizers to have an ice hockey event at HarborCenter, so this year it was at RiverWorks.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — An ice hockey event that has been raising millions of dollars found a way to be successful.

This year the 11 Day Power Play was outside at Buffalo RiverWorks. There were less players, but the event is still making a big difference. It was created to help save lives and raise money for cancer research.

There were no spectators, but it was live-streamed event.

"Before the ball dropped this year, we hit a million dollars," Amy Lesakowski, one of the event's founders, said Sunday. "Right now, $1,045,000, and we really want to hit $1.1 million this year during a pandemic."

The event has raised more than $5 million since 2017.

Coronavirus restrictions made it impossible for organizers to have an ice hockey event at HarborCenter, so this year it was at RiverWorks.

Founders Mike and Amy Lesakowski are hosting a live stream for four hours every night.

Talking to everyone from players about why they play, to people from Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, Camp Good Days, Make-A-Wish and Oishei Children's Hospital about where the funds raised will be used, and how important every dollar is.

“Every year, it’s important for us to raise awareness, and through our live stream we'll be able to bring the 11 Day Power Play to people at home,” Amy Lesakowski said.

“That will allow us to connect with really more people than we've ever been able to. Cancer awareness in our community is really important, and what our beneficiaries do for our community is important to share.”