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By Chicago Steel, 03/09/18, 5:00PM CST


March 2 Innovation on Ice game presented by FONA International featured game-worn specialty jersey auction, ticket fundraiser

GENEVA, ILLINOIS — Last Friday, March 2, the Chicago Steel hosted Innovation on Ice: A Power Play for Geneva Schools presented by FONA International, a USHL regular season game against the Omaha Lancers that doubled as a fundraiser to benefit Geneva Schools and the Geneva Academic Foundation (“GAF”). Over $3600 was raised between a specialty game-worn jersey auction and ticket sales.

The Steel wore special grey Geneva Vikings jerseys which were auctioned at the game to raise funds for GAF. The jerseys were provided by FONA International, the game’s title sponsor for a second consecutive year, ensuring all proceeds went to GAF. FONA International also purchased tickets for their employees with a portion of the ticket sales benefitting GAF.

The Steel also hosted a reception for guests of GAF and FONA International on the suite level prior to the game.

“Once again, the Chicago Steel organization gave us an amazing fundraising event, from the pre-game gathering to the jersey auction,” said GAF President Kimberly Luthin. “Thank you so much to everyone for their great work and support of GAF. And our deepest gratitude to Joe (Slawek, Founder CEO & Chairman of FONA International) and everyone at FONA who sponsored our event. Without FONA's support, we could not host this fundraiser. I know everyone who was able to attend had a great time and we look forward to partnering again in the future.”

2017-2018 marks the Steel’s third season since relocating to Fox Valley Ice Arena in Geneva, and third season the Steel have partnered with Geneva School District 304. A Nov. 11, 2016 game served as a similar fundraiser, including a Geneva Vikings warm-up jersey auction fundraiser, and the Steel also hosted Teacher Appreciation Night on April 8, 2016, including a check donation from the Steel to the GAF that went towards scholarships for two Geneva High School seniors.

Over 95 percent of players in the USHL, the nation’s only Tier 1 junior hockey league, receive NCAA Division I student-athlete opportunities. The Steel’s current roster features 17 players committed to 14 different NCAA Division I schools, including Geneva Community High School graduate and 2017 USHL Co-Scholar Athlete of the Year, alternate captain Graham Lillibridge, who is set to become a student athlete at Yale University following his Steel career. Lillibridge, a defenseman, scored a goal for the Steel in a 6-4 loss to the league-leading Lancers.

The Steel play their next three games on the road including a Western Conference swing this weekend — tonight at the Omaha Lancers, and Saturday at the Sioux Falls Stampede. Each game is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. and will be carried live on Mixlr (free audio) and HockeyTV (iPPV). Saturday’s game at Sioux Falls is the USHL Game of the Week and available free in HD on HockeyTV. For more information, visit

Chicago’s next home games are Saturday, March 17, and Sunday, March 18 — a weekend set against the Tri-City Storm. March 17 features a Salute to Heroes, honoring first responders. Geneva’s back-to-back IHSA Class 4A girls basketball championship team will be recognized at the game. March 18 includes a Rusty Bobblehead Giveaway presented by Waubonsee Community College for the first 500 fans in attendance. The Steel Family Sunday game also features the Steel Family Pack offer — purchase four tickets, four hot dogs, four sodas (or waters) and four chuck-a-pucks starting at just $48. For more information, or to purchase tickets, call 855-51-STEEL, stop by the Box Office at Fox Valley Ice Arena or visit



Geneva Academic Foundation strives to provide students new educational experiences, ideas, and opportunities by funding grants for technology, services, programs and equipment for teachers, schools and classrooms throughout Geneva Community School District 304, grades K through 12. GAF has awarded over $1,300,000 in grants since its founding in 1987. Grants have been given for GTV television studio equipment in Geneva High School, heart-rate monitors for elementary school physical education classes, multiple classroom Smartboards and standing desks, computers, software, document cameras, Starlab, microscopes, skeletons, books, reading aids, and many other items. In addition, the GAF annually funds two college scholarships for two Geneva High School seniors. The scholarships are awarded on the basis of merit and an essay written by the student. For more information, visit



Founded in 1987, FONA International creates and produces flavors for many of the largest food, beverage, nutritional companies in the world. It offers flavor solutions for the confection, grain, beverage, performance nutrition, and emerging markets from its state-of-the-art, 33-acre campus in Geneva, IL. FONA’s seven core values drive it to pursue excellence and foster incredible partnerships. More than just great flavors – FONA provides complete market solutions.