Thunderbirds Sign Local Sports Anchor to Celebrity Contract

Winston-Salem, NC - The Carolina Thunderbirds are excited to announce the signing of Mike Solarte to a celebrity contract, effective for Saturday's game against the Mentor Ice Breakers. Solarte is the Sports Director for Charter Communications/Spectrum News and is the host of Chevrolet Sports Night which is seen all throughout North Carolina. He has held his current position of Sports Director for 17 years. He is a native of the Chicagoland area and not only grew up playing ice hockey but continues to play when he's not working in the sportscasting business.

"I appreciate the Thunderbirds giving me the opportunity to live out a dream, and that is to play in a professional hockey game." Solarte said. His celebrity appearance won't just be for the notoriety though. A special authentic replica jersey featuring Solarte's name and number will be auctioned off during the game with proceeds benefiting the National MS Society, Greater Carolinas Chapter. Solarte's wife, Tracie is afflicted with the disease.

Thunderbirds President/GM Scott Brand commented on the signing: "On the fun side of things, we look forward to Mike using his size and 'speed' to our advantage. But on a serious note, we're hoping to raise a lot of money for MS and provide more awareness for the cause and for our hockey club by Mike playing in this game."

Fans can find the jersey on Saturday, January 26th on the LiveSource app and can bid from anywhere using their mobile device. The LiveSource app is free on all Android and iOS devices.

Mike Solarte can be seen locally on newscasts for Spectrum News and WXLV ABC 45 in the Triad.

The Carolina Thunderbirds are proud members of the Federal Hockey League, now in its ninth season. The Thunderbirds are in their second season of play, looking to build on the success of their inaugural season where the team posted an 87-point season with a record of 25-24-5-2 (W-L-OTW-OTL). The Thunderbirds also set an FHL record with over 65,000 fans through the doors in their first season and six sellout crowds. Season and group tickets are on sale now by calling (336) 774-GOAL(4625).