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Feb 25, 2013

Minnesota Wild, Xcel Energy Center, Saint Paul Rivercentre to participate in earth hour on Saturday, March 31

SAINT PAUL, Minn. – The Minnesota Wild, Xcel Energy Center and Saint Paul RiverCentre are pleased to announce their participation in Earth Hour this Saturday, March 31 when the Wild hosts the Los Angeles Kings. All 30 NHL facilities have pledged their commitment to World Wildlife Fund’s (WWF) Earth Hour, the world’s largest annual public action for the environment.

From 8:30-9:30 p.m. (local time) Saturday, Xcel Energy Center will join hundreds of millions of homes and businesses worldwide, switching off non-essential lighting for one hour. The Xcel Energy Center sign outside Gate 2 will be turned off, as well as the two LED marquees. In addition, the concourse lights will be dimmed inside Xcel Energy Center. The rest of the energy being used that day in all three facilities will be off-set by the Windsource by Events program.

“The Wild, Xcel Energy Center and Saint Paul RiverCentre are thrilled to participate in this worthwhile initiative,” said Jim Ibister, vice president of facility administration/general manager of Saint Paul RiverCentre. “Minnesota Sports & Entertainment has long been a champion of environmental causes, and will continue to do so.”

Saint Paul RiverCentre and Xcel Energy Center were recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as the 2011 WasteWise Midsize Business Partner of the Year. The facilities received the honor for the successful completion of their multifaceted sustainability initiative “50-50 in 2.” The EPA Partner of the Year award recognizes overall waste reduction achievements, efforts to purchase or manufacture recycled-content products and activities to promote WasteWise.

“Xcel Energy applauds the Minnesota Wild and the NHL for using Earth Hour to focus on the importance of conserving energy,” said Judy Poferl, president and CEO of Northern States Power Co.-Minnesota, an Xcel Energy company. “Taking simple steps to use energy efficiently not only saves money, it also protects the environment by reducing the need to build new power plants.”

NHL Green is further supporting this initiative by reducing energy usage at NHL headquarters in New York City at that time.

The goal of Earth Hour is to show the world that even taking the seemingly smallest measures to conserve energy is a big step in the right direction for communities, businesses and governments across the globe.

“For the NHL, the success of this event is about more than turning the lights off for one hour. It is about changing the way our sport approaches energy consumption,” said Bernadette Mansur, SVP of NHL Green. “Our facilities are challenging themselves to operate more efficiently, and we are encouraging our employees to observe Earth Hour at home and reduce their energy consumption throughout the day.”

In 2010, the National Hockey League formalized a commitment to protecting the environment by launching NHL Green, a program which has developed measurement tools and sustainability initiatives to help reduce the energy, water and waste associated with facility operations and the game. In 2011, the League was presented with Beyond Sports’ 2011 Sport for Environment award.

NHL Green encourages all fans to participate in Earth Hour on Saturday, March 31 and commit to making small adjustments that reduce their impact on the natural environment.

“When it comes to winning the fight against climate change, it’s clear that we all need to work together,” says WWF-Canada Freshwater Ambassador Scott Niedermayer, who captured four Stanley Cups in 18 NHL seasons. “By joining Team Earth Hour, we can work together for a sustainable future.”

About Earth Hour: Started in Australia in 2007 by the World Wildlife Fund, Earth Hour has grown to become the world’s largest global climate change action. Earth Hour supporters turn off non-essential lighting for one hour to send a symbolic message - that now is the time to take action on climate change. More than 5,200 cities and towns in 135 countries worldwide switched off their lights for Earth Hour 2011, including global landmarks such as the Golden Gate Bridge, Rome’s Coliseum and the Empire State Building.

Visit www.wild.com/pressbox for the latest news and information from the team including press releases, game notes, postgame notes, multimedia content and daily statistics. Single-game tickets remain for all Wild home games including tonight’s game against the New York Rangers at 7 p.m. Visit www.wild.com or www.Ticketmaster.com for more information.