Thunderbirds Signing Solarte to Celebrity Contract

Winston-Salem, NC - The Carolina Thunderbirds are proud to announce the celebrity contract signing of Mike Solarte 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 the Chevrolet Sports Night seen all throughout North Carolina. Solarte 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.

Solarte's 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.

"On the fun side of things we look forward to Mike using his size and "speed" to our advantage" Thunderbirds President/GM Scott Brand said. "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 win the jersey via the "Jersey off the back" raffle Saturday night in the Annex.

Mike Solarte can be seen locally on newscasts on 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 25-5-2-24 (W-OTW-OTL-L). The Thunderbirds also set an FHL record with over 66,000 fans through the doors in their first season. Season and group tickets are on sale now by calling 336-774-GOAL (4625).