(left to right – Darren Ritchie (Wheat Kings G.M.), Greg Bezaire (Local TD Branch Manager), Connor Gutenberg (Wheat King forward), Alexander Vizarro (Regional Manager – TD), Dave Lowry (Wheat Kings Head Coach)

Brandon, MB. – The Western Hockey League’s Brandon Wheat Kings, in partnership with TD Bank Group have announced the return of the hockey club’s popular “TD Read to Succeed” Program for both the 2019-20 and 2020-21 seasons.

The program, which was introduced by the Wheat Kings and Brandon School Division in 2004, was designed after a pilot project developed by the WHL’s Vancouver Giants in 2002. It features several members of the hockey club visiting schools throughout Brandon and surrounding area.

Student participation during the first few years of this local program has come in at virtually 100%, with many of the students exceeding the programs required by the participating schools.

The 2018-19 program involved close to 65 classrooms, 13 schools and over 1,000 tickets. The TD Read to Succeed program encourages students in grades 2-6 to spend extra time reading – both at home and in school.

As in recent years, several Wheat King players, including local products Connor Gutenberg, Lynden McCallum and Zach Wytinck, will visit schools this season, talking to students about the importance of reading and education. In all cases, the players will read to the students and upon successfully completing a literacy challenge – introduced by each classroom teacher – the students will be rewarded with bookmarks and complimentary tickets to an upcoming game, compliments of TD.

“Reading is fun and can spark curiosity and imagination, allowing children to envision a world of endless possibilities,” said Gregory Bezaire, Branch Manager, TD Canada Trust. “At TD, we believe that through reading and early learning, every student can build a strong foundation for their future success and prepare them for whatever tomorrow brings. We are proud to be the title sponsor for the TD Read to Succeed Program to make a positive impact on students here in Brandon.”

Each classroom presentation, which will include time for reading, questions and answers will take approximately 25-30 minutes. Schools or classrooms interested in scheduling a Wheat Kings’ TD Canada Trust Read to Succeed visit are encouraged to email

“The TD Read to Succeed program is one of the most important and impactful community initiatives the Wheat Kings are involved with” said Chris Falko, Director of Game Day Operations and Community Relations for the Wheat Kings. “Getting into local schools and involving the students in discussions on reading, literature and the overall importance of education makes a lasting impression long after the visit is over. This is something we couldn’t do to this level without the amazing support of TD”

On the ice, the Wheat Kings continue to prepare to raise the curtain on the 2019-20 season against the Winnipeg Ice on Friday September 20th. Tickets are available at the Keystone Centre Box Office.

About TD Bank Group

The Toronto-Dominion Bank and its subsidiaries are collectively known as TD Bank Group (“TD” or the “Bank”). TD is the fifth largest bank in North America by branches and serves over 26 million customers in three key businesses operating in a number of locations in financial centres around the globe: Canadian Retail, including TD Canada Trust, TD Auto Finance Canada, TD Wealth (Canada), TD Direct Investing, and TD Insurance; U.S. Retail, including TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®, TD Auto Finance U.S., TD Wealth (U.S.), and an investment in TD Ameritrade; and Wholesale Banking, including TD Securities. TD also ranks among the world’s leading online financial services firms, with more than 13 million active online and mobile customers. TD had CDN$1.4 trillion in assets on July 31, 2019. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades under the symbol “TD” on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges.


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