Pond hockey tournament a 'go' at Valens on February 4

News Nov 22, 2006 Flamborough Review

Despite an extended January thaw, athletes don't need to worry about walking - or skating - on thin ice at the Ontario Pond Hockey Championships at Valens Conservation Area, says Tony Horvat.

In fact, planning for the event, slated for February 4, is full steam ahead, said the director of land management for the Hamilton Conservation Authority.

"We have eight inches of ice right now, and there's three weeks left," Horvat said last Friday. "And it's going to get cold again. It's not an issue for us."

The pond hockey tournament concept was launched at Valens last year, with 16 teams signing on for the outdoor matches. This year, organizers are aiming for twice that number, and hope to draw players from all over southern Ontario.

"We'll have 32 teams and 200 players," said Horvat. "All of last year's teams were notified in December, and we already have heard from a dozen teams, so we're a third of the way there," he said.

The tourney got a boost when the Hamilton Bulldogs Hockey Club came on board earlier this month as a major sponsor. Hamilton radio stations CHML and Y108 are media sponsors for the event.

Teams entering the pond hockey tournament can have a maximum of six players, "so that everyone gets a full share of ice-time," noted Horvat. Teams are guaranteed three games, with the possibility of six games if they make it into the playoff round. The registration fee is $330 per team; all proceeds from the event will support area conservation projects.

According to Horvat, eight 75 x 150 - foot rinks will be created on the reservoir, with - weather permitting - snow banks setting ice pad boundaries instead of boards. Each team will have four players on the ice, who will play two 15-minute periods with a five-minute rest in between. Small, unmanned goals at either end of the rinks, will allow for lots of scoring action, notes Horvat.

"This is old-time hockey as it was originally meant to be played," he added.

Horvat notes that the sky's the limit when it comes to playing Canada's favourite sport outdoors, and hopes to see the Ontario Pond Hockey Championships expand to 64 teams next year, and to eventually extend over two or three days. He's also excited about the number of people who will be exposed to the winter activities the north Flamborough park has to offer.

"People don't realize we're open in the winter," he said, noting that the facility is closed only on Christmas Day. Winter activities include ice-fishing, hiking and camping.

Teams interested in signing up for the February 4 tournament can contact the HCA at 905-525-2181.

Businesses looking for sponsorship opportunities can also call the HCA, or visit on line at www.pondhockeychamps.ca

Pond hockey tournament a 'go' at Valens on February 4

News Nov 22, 2006 Flamborough Review

Despite an extended January thaw, athletes don't need to worry about walking - or skating - on thin ice at the Ontario Pond Hockey Championships at Valens Conservation Area, says Tony Horvat.

In fact, planning for the event, slated for February 4, is full steam ahead, said the director of land management for the Hamilton Conservation Authority.

"We have eight inches of ice right now, and there's three weeks left," Horvat said last Friday. "And it's going to get cold again. It's not an issue for us."

The pond hockey tournament concept was launched at Valens last year, with 16 teams signing on for the outdoor matches. This year, organizers are aiming for twice that number, and hope to draw players from all over southern Ontario.

"We'll have 32 teams and 200 players," said Horvat. "All of last year's teams were notified in December, and we already have heard from a dozen teams, so we're a third of the way there," he said.

The tourney got a boost when the Hamilton Bulldogs Hockey Club came on board earlier this month as a major sponsor. Hamilton radio stations CHML and Y108 are media sponsors for the event.

Teams entering the pond hockey tournament can have a maximum of six players, "so that everyone gets a full share of ice-time," noted Horvat. Teams are guaranteed three games, with the possibility of six games if they make it into the playoff round. The registration fee is $330 per team; all proceeds from the event will support area conservation projects.

According to Horvat, eight 75 x 150 - foot rinks will be created on the reservoir, with - weather permitting - snow banks setting ice pad boundaries instead of boards. Each team will have four players on the ice, who will play two 15-minute periods with a five-minute rest in between. Small, unmanned goals at either end of the rinks, will allow for lots of scoring action, notes Horvat.

"This is old-time hockey as it was originally meant to be played," he added.

Horvat notes that the sky's the limit when it comes to playing Canada's favourite sport outdoors, and hopes to see the Ontario Pond Hockey Championships expand to 64 teams next year, and to eventually extend over two or three days. He's also excited about the number of people who will be exposed to the winter activities the north Flamborough park has to offer.

"People don't realize we're open in the winter," he said, noting that the facility is closed only on Christmas Day. Winter activities include ice-fishing, hiking and camping.

Teams interested in signing up for the February 4 tournament can contact the HCA at 905-525-2181.

Businesses looking for sponsorship opportunities can also call the HCA, or visit on line at www.pondhockeychamps.ca

Pond hockey tournament a 'go' at Valens on February 4

News Nov 22, 2006 Flamborough Review

Despite an extended January thaw, athletes don't need to worry about walking - or skating - on thin ice at the Ontario Pond Hockey Championships at Valens Conservation Area, says Tony Horvat.

In fact, planning for the event, slated for February 4, is full steam ahead, said the director of land management for the Hamilton Conservation Authority.

"We have eight inches of ice right now, and there's three weeks left," Horvat said last Friday. "And it's going to get cold again. It's not an issue for us."

The pond hockey tournament concept was launched at Valens last year, with 16 teams signing on for the outdoor matches. This year, organizers are aiming for twice that number, and hope to draw players from all over southern Ontario.

"We'll have 32 teams and 200 players," said Horvat. "All of last year's teams were notified in December, and we already have heard from a dozen teams, so we're a third of the way there," he said.

The tourney got a boost when the Hamilton Bulldogs Hockey Club came on board earlier this month as a major sponsor. Hamilton radio stations CHML and Y108 are media sponsors for the event.

Teams entering the pond hockey tournament can have a maximum of six players, "so that everyone gets a full share of ice-time," noted Horvat. Teams are guaranteed three games, with the possibility of six games if they make it into the playoff round. The registration fee is $330 per team; all proceeds from the event will support area conservation projects.

According to Horvat, eight 75 x 150 - foot rinks will be created on the reservoir, with - weather permitting - snow banks setting ice pad boundaries instead of boards. Each team will have four players on the ice, who will play two 15-minute periods with a five-minute rest in between. Small, unmanned goals at either end of the rinks, will allow for lots of scoring action, notes Horvat.

"This is old-time hockey as it was originally meant to be played," he added.

Horvat notes that the sky's the limit when it comes to playing Canada's favourite sport outdoors, and hopes to see the Ontario Pond Hockey Championships expand to 64 teams next year, and to eventually extend over two or three days. He's also excited about the number of people who will be exposed to the winter activities the north Flamborough park has to offer.

"People don't realize we're open in the winter," he said, noting that the facility is closed only on Christmas Day. Winter activities include ice-fishing, hiking and camping.

Teams interested in signing up for the February 4 tournament can contact the HCA at 905-525-2181.

Businesses looking for sponsorship opportunities can also call the HCA, or visit on line at www.pondhockeychamps.ca