When police officers and firefighters face off, the public cheers for firefighters, and other recent news

The cop beat took me to a hockey arena last week. And considering the number of officers and fire personnel on scene, you’d have assumed there was an explosion.

Instead, they were all off duty. It was the 10th annual hockey game between “guns” and “hoses” for a muscular dystrophy charity organization.

But there was nothing charitable about the rivalry between the two sides. Many of them play in rec leagues year-round, some just to get ready for this game. Pretty fascinating show of camaraderie:

Roanoke County firefighter Kenny Mallock had a large purple bruise under his left eye Friday night, and that was before he took the ice against his former police brethren.

What he calls a friendly rivalry had even been stewing Thursday in a scrimmage for Friday’s 10th annual Guns & Hoses Charity Hockey Game between local firefighters and police officers. Mallock had been in a hockey fight. He said the shiner came from the hit that led to the fight.

Mallock, one of a few players who have switched sides over the decade of playing the game, said he has often been a target since he moved over to the Hoses three years ago.

Read the full story: Guns and Hoses hockey game showcases friendly rivalry

I’ve also had a few other featured stories in the paper in the past couple months. Enjoy a selection of those, and know I’ve got a big piece in the works:

No ‘bad guys’ in SPCA, pound flap

Virginia Tech students dies of injuries sustained in Christmas Day crash

Atheist group’s billboard draw a strong reaction