Try Hockey for Free Day, USA Hockey Sled Classic Among Featured Events
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - USA Hockey and the National Hockey League today announced their inaugural Come Play Hockey Month initiative, a nationwide effort throughout November designed to drive participation in the sport of ice hockey in the United States.
The nation's youth hockey community and U.S.-based NHL clubs, players, alumni and fans will support Come Play Youth Hockey Month with a slate of activities, including Try Hockey for Free Day on Saturday (Nov. 5), when over 430 rinks across the country are expected to conduct a one-hour clinic with the hopes of introducing nearly 10,000 kids to the sport of hockey for free.
"We're excited, through Try Hockey for Free Day, about the opportunity to give so many kids the chance to experience the joys our sport already provides to hundreds of thousands of kids all across America," said Pat Kelleher, assistant executive director of membership development for USA Hockey. "Through the efforts of the NHL and its member clubs, rink owners all across the U.S., our affiliates and local youth associations, and many others, we've built significant momentum in so many areas in helping our sport continue to move forward."
Try Hockey for Free Day will build upon last year's historic youth hockey season during which, for the first time ever, included more than 100,000 children under the age of nine playing the game - a 15% increase since 2008. To learn more about Try Hockey for Free Day, visit TryHockeyforFree.com.
From Nov. 18-20, USA Hockey, the NHL and the Philadelphia Flyers will team up to present the 2011 USA Hockey Sled Classic. The second annual tournament, which will feature over 80 of the top sled hockey players in the country from NHL club-sponsored adult sled hockey teams, will take place in Vorhees, N.J., at the Virtua Center Flyers Skate Zone, the Flyers' official practice facility. For more information on the 2011 USA Hockey Sled Classic, visit USAHockey.com.
"We are honored to partner with USA Hockey on this very important effort to grow the game," said Kenneth Martin, Jr., NHL vice president of community affairs. "Come Play Hockey Month is an extraordinary opportunity to show our continuing support for youth hockey and disabled hockey in the United States."
NOTES: A second nationwide Try Hockey for Free Day is slated during the fifth annual Hockey Weekend Across America, presented by Reebok, on Feb. 20, 2012.
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