As is their way, the New Jersey Devils are making their annual Black History Celebration Night on Tuesday more than just the release of a cool-looking jersey.
Yes, they have that (see jersey here), but the club’s fourth “Hockey Is for Everyone” game of the season, is intended to celebrate Black-owned businesses, too.
PeduL, which serves as the helmet brand for Devils’ road games courtesy of Prudential Financial, will be featured in multiple content pieces throughout the night. Co-founder and CEO Chisa Egbelu will do a radio intermission report and an interview with Devils/NJD.tv reporter Catherine Bogart during the second intermission.
Egbelu also will be a guest on the MSG pregame show with Erika Wachter and Bryce Salvador on Feb. 8.
Prior to the game Tuesday, there will be a panel and networking event in the Prudential Lounge that will be moderated by Brielle Lewis, director of corporate sponsorship strategy for Prudential Financial.
Lewis will be joined by Prudential Financial and New Jersey Devils directors of social media, alongside two additional experts in the space, where they will discuss valuable tips for social media strategy.
As part of the night, the Devils are hosting 140 youth from community groups including YMCA Newark Housing & Social Responsibility, Youth Advocate Programs and Hockey in New Jersey, courtesy of Prudential.
As part of Prudential Center’s shadowing program, the Devils will welcome Barringer High School in Newark as they receive an in-game experience working with the teams in Corporate Partnerships Activation and Game Presentation.
Funds raised through the night’s 50/50 will benefit Kismet of Kings, a nonprofit organization and after-school program in Jersey City dedicated to empowering Black and Brown male, teenage students from low-income and underserved neighborhoods and provide them with essential mentorship, character development and life skills training to prepare them for success in high school, college and beyond.
As always is the case, the national anthem will be sung by Arlette, who is celebrating 25 years as the Devils’ beloved singer of the national anthem. In addition, a feature video highlighting Arlette’s career will be shared in-game and on social channels.
In-game activations include recognizing networking event attendees, Razu’s artist spotlight feature and concourse performance during the first intermission, and featured food items of the game from Melba’s and Bro-Ritos.
Egbelu said the series of events shows the Devils’ true support as an ally.
“This evening is a dream come true and an emblem of hope and inspiration to our startup peers throughout the community,” he said. “We are so proud to be a partner of the New Jersey Devils and Prudential, and the support that both of these organizations have provided has been life-changing. I’m so glad that it gets to be on display for everyone to see.”
Of course, there will be a cool jersey, too.
Designed by local artist Doune Clermont from Jersey City, the custom jersey is intended to honor the unsung heroes of everyday life who serve as inspiration for prominent Black leaders — historical political figures, artists, writers, or scholars — each contributing significantly to the progress of Black people in America. In their words:
“The portrayed figures include: Grandmothers tending to the children of political leaders during meetings. Siblings who inspired Black writers to persist in challenging racism through essays and novels. Fathers and mothers who motivated their children to pursue dreams, whether in music or breaking barriers in sports. Ministers also played a significant role in shaping their values and commitment to civil rights.”
The custom designed jerseys available to wear during player arrivals will be auctioned between Feb. 6-13, with proceeds benefiting Newark Emergency Services for Families. Fans will be able to place their bid here.
One last thing: The first 9,000 fans in attendance will receive a mini helmet, courtesy of Prudential.