The Minnesota Hockey Recreation League registration deadline is Friday, November 15th. The Rec League offers players in the greater metro area a hockey alternative that fosters a love for the game while enabling and encouraging more kids to participate.
The Rec League focuses on providing a no-pressure, fun-oriented atmosphere. It promotes the experience and enjoyment of the game over winning by advocating for equal teams and close competition throughout the league. It also eases the load on players’ parents and families with its low cost, low commitment and low travel format.
“I’ve been coaching in a variety of sports for many years, and this league is one of the most enjoyable experiences I’ve ever had,” said Ed Litman, a volunteer coach.
This season Rec. League will be providing three levels of play: 12U, 14U and 17U. Teams are typically formed according to geographical area which helps minimize the travel and cost involved for families. While registering, players are provided the option to sign up with their friends or move up age levels according to skill level, but the league reserves the right to match players with the appropriate level for their abilities.
The playing season starts in December with three one-hour clinics to provide the players with basic skills. Then, the regular season begins in January. Teams have one practice and one game a week from the beginning of January through March 9th, and a year-end festival will be held the weekend of March 15th to celebrate the season.
“We were never going to sign up for association hockey,” said Litman. “With two other kids, we couldn’t make that kind of commitment as a family. Without this league, my son wouldn’t be playing organized hockey.”
Many of the Rec League’s participants are involved in other activities during the hockey season and don’t have the time necessary to play in traditional youth hockey leagues. The Rec League gives them an opportunity to stay involved in the game, when they otherwise would have walked away from it.
“There are other places where kids can be champions,” said Litman, who has noticed many of the league’s participants are also involved in sports like soccer, skiing or snowboarding during the hockey season. “This league allows them to do that. For these kids, hockey is about having a good time.”
For more information or to register your child, visit www.minnesotahockey.org/recleague.