Welcome to the 2013-2014 season and the rich tradition of ice hockey in Minnesota! Our community based hockey model is a clear leader in providing all players with the opportunity to enjoy the game and reach their potential.
All of this would not be possible if not for the dedication and tireless effort of thousands of volunteers that are Minnesota Hockey. For all of you, we have the deepest appreciation and say “Thank You.”
There are a number of new and improved offerings for this season. The A/AA State Tournament format will continue in 2014 after a very successful pilot last season. We are introducing sanctioned mite cross/half ice tournaments to encourage play on an age appropriate ice surface. The SafeSport Initiative moves into full implementation this season. And we are introducing a Minnesota Development Model to assist associations with structuring their player development programming. With so many enhancements taking effect this season, Minnesota Hockey has also renewed our commitment to providing our members with easy access to information and news by revitalizing our website, reformatting our weekly newsletter and adding multiple social media channels.
Minnesota Hockey’s priorities continue to be Growth, Player Development and Safety. Grow the Game by introducing children to the great sport and providing programs to keep them playing into adulthood. Maximize Player Development by providing age appropriate training so they will learn to love the game and achieve their goals. Enhance Safety by providing the safest possible environment both on and off the ice. On the ice, by teaching players correct technique and enforcing rules to discourage dangerous play. Off the ice, by protecting players from abuse and misconduct through the full implementation of the SafeSport program.
I would encourage parents, as a part of Minnesota Hockey, to help us accomplish our priorities by:
Minnesota Hockey and its affiliate associations provide everyone the opportunity to experience the great game of ice hockey, from four year-olds to the adult player, the recreational player to the elite player, as well as athletes with disabilities. Hockey is indeed for everyone.
Again, I wish to thank our volunteers who make it possible for Minnesota Hockey to be the premier development model in the USA and the mothers and fathers who support their hockey players to enjoy our game to the fullest.
Best wishes for the 2013-14 season and most importantly, have FUN!
See you at the rink,
President, Minnesota Hockey