1. 4.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Time to Celebrate and Give Back

That's right, boys and girls: This weekend is Hockey Weekend Across America! What could be better than a weekend dedicated to spreading the joy that is The Great Game across these 57 states?

From the USA Hockey website, here are the stated objectives of this weekend:

1. To celebrate our game and all involved in the sport throughout the nation using all means possible.
2. Provide opportunities for those who haven't played hockey to try it, resulting ultimately in more people playing our game at all levels.

To help celebrate The Great Game, there's a different theme for each day:

Friday, Feb. 13 - Wear Your Jersey Day - Sponsored by ShopUSAHockey.com

• Show your hockey spirit by wearing your favorite jersey from any level of hockey (youth, high school, college, etc.) to school.

Saturday, Feb. 14 - Bring a Friend to the Rink Day - Sponsored by the NHL

• No matter what the event is (an open skate, a youth game or a professional game) do your best to bring a friend to the rink to introduce them to the sport.

Sunday, Feb. 15 - Celebrate Local Hockey Heroes Day - Sponsored by Liberty Mutual's Responsible Sports

• Honor your favorite coach, timekeeper, official, player, etc., through a special recognition event. Use the day as a fund-raising effort for you association and just plain show the community what hockey has done for them.

For those of you who (like me) are far removed from school, proudly wear your jersey to work tomorrow (my condolences if you're wearing your favorite jersey to the unemployment office). My only question is...home or away? Decisions, decisions...

Saturday, introduce an unenlightened friend to The Great Game. If you're in Phoenix, the Coyotes host the Flames on Valentine's Day, and the All You Can Eat Seats are just $21.30 each. In Nashville, the Predators have a Valentine's Day Special, as do the Flyers. The Kings, Lightning, and Hurricanes have good deals for Saturday, as well. The Minnesota-Ottawa game is just about sold out, and the Blackhawks have some standing room tickets available for their tilt with Dallas.

If you've read this far, you probably love hockey as much as I do, so get with it - Celebrate hockey in America! Wear your jersey on Friday, and take a friend to a game on Saturday. Hockey has enriched our lives immeasurably, and it's time to share the wealth. This weekend, do your part to help grow the Great Game in our Great Land!

P.S. A special thanks to Canada for sharing the Greatest Game on Ice with us. As far as Canadian inventions go, it's even better than the zipper, Pamela Anderson or poutine.

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