By Dan Walton
Its not cheap to play the most popular sport in Canada, but many families in the valley were able to have the cost of their kids hockey equipment covered by the NHL Players Association (NHLPA).
Thanks to the NHLPA Goals and Dreams Fund, the Eddie Mountain Memorial Arena was packed with boxes full of hockey equipment on Tuesday, July 22nd. An abundance of brand new equipment was stocked to outfit the young athletes with everything from skates to helmets. And helping the little hockey players suit up was Calgary Flames left winger Mason Raymond, who spent the evening assisting the program.
Im doing everything I can to grow the game to get these kids fitted with hockey equipment and out on the ice, Mr. Raymond said. I was a kid too, and that feeling to be on the ice lets them do something they love.
The Goals and Dreams application for the valley was fronted by Mr. Raymond, said Chris Prosser, who will be serving as the vice-president of the East Kootenay Minor Hockey Association over the next season.
It takes whats expensive equipment and makes it accessible to everybody, Mr. Prosser said. This gives kids the opportunity to try out Canadas game and it gives us the chance to grow our association at the same time.
Mr. Raymond said its a dream come true to be playing hockey as close to the valley as his industry will allow, having signed with Calgary early in July.
Invermeres the town where I spend my summers. To see hockey grow in a little community like this is amazing, he said. Being able to provide these services is truly an honour and something Im very proud of.