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A Heartfelt Plea

Help out with a project that needs you.

NBA: Portland Trail Blazers at New York Knicks Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Hello Portland Trail Blazers fans and Blazer’s Edge Readers. The new year has dawned now, which means we’re a little over two months away from the Blazers facing the Atlanta Hawks on March 13th. That’s the date of our annual Blazer’s Edge Night, when readers from this community send a couple thousand kids from the local area to see the Blazers play live.

Each year we receive requests from teachers, principals, counselors, and coaches who work with under-served children. Often it’s an adventure for these kids to get to school or practice regularly. The idea of actually going to the Moda Center is beyond a dream.

That’s where we step in. The Trail Blazers hold aside large blocks of upper-deck tickets for us to purchase and donate for that night. Readers like you buy them in ones, twos, tens...whatever you can manage. Each ticket makes a difference. We tell these community leaders that the seats will be there for them, the children, and drivers/chaperones. That night, the Blazers put the tickets into Will Call, the leaders pick them up, and thousands of happy young folks get to see their favorite team play.

Tickets are very reasonable. Many are $12. Others cost $16 or $23, depending on what section they’re in. You and a friend can barely eat at McDonalds for $12 anymore. $23 is less than you’ll drop for a dinner at Applebee’s. Those dinners might change your evening. These tickets can change months, years, sometimes lives.

Every year we hear from teachers who can’t believe they get the chance to take their students to a game. They talk about the anticipation, the excitement of carpooling or busing to the venue, the kids bounding up and down in line, waiting to get in. It’s a time of joy. Both adults and students work so hard during the year in order to fulfill expectations, to get on the right track academically, socially, and otherwise.

For one night, we give them something beyond expectations. For one night, we say, “This is for you, just because.”

Nothing can compare to the moment when our participants walk into the huge arena, see the scoreboard, and watch real NBA players warming up on that court. It brings out the kid in everybody, adult chaperones included! The cheering, the yelling, the whole atmosphere is electric. We all get to be part of something bigger than ourselves, together.

That’s a place not many kids have nowadays in this post-pandemic world. These kids less than most.

If you can help with a ticket or two—more if you can afford it—you’re going to make a world of difference to people who need it. The process is simple! The Blazers let you order directly from them, just like you were buying your own tickets, but instead of going to your account, they go to the pool of tickets for participants!

Here’s how. Help us today if you can, and thank you so much from Blazer’s Edge, the staff, and all the people who will go because of you.

  1. Donating tickets to the event is easy! You purchase them directly from the Trail Blazers, just as if you were buying them for yourself, except you do it through the special site they’ve set up for this event! Click through that link and you’ll see the page.
  2. Once on the event page, click on “Buying Options” and you’ll be taken to the ticket selection page. There are three levels of tickets: $12, $16, and $23. Purchase as few or many as you wish! Even sending one participant matters. If you can send a whole row, even better!
  3. After you checkout and purchase, the tickets go into the event account, earmarked for our participants.
  4. In the meantime, people who work with under-served kids make requests for the tickets. We say yes to as many as possible, based on how many tickets are donated. Usually that approaches a couple thousand per year!
  5. On that night, the participants come in their groups and pick up the tickets you donated from the ticket office. With those in hand, they walk right into the arena and get to see a game! The Moda Center is always noisy with multiple hundreds of brand new fans in the arena. It doesn’t matter how the Blazers are doing or which teams are playing. The looks on the participants’ faces as they see a real, live NBA game in person is priceless!