As part of a coordinated effort to help grow youth hockey throughout the state of Colorado, the Colorado Avalanche announced today a partnership program with the National Hockey League (NHL) and the National Hockey League Players Association (NHLPA) known as "Game On."
The program, working in conjunction with the Colorado Amateur Hockey Association (CAHA), will help to positively impact the lives of thousands of children throughout the state through the great game of hockey.
"The state of Colorado has a rich tradition of producing both great players and great people through the sport of hockey," said Jason Schofield, Director of Amateur Hockey Development for the Colorado Avalanche. "That's why we're so excited to be able to provide access and exposure to the sport for thousands of kids throughout the state. It is our belief that "Game On" will help lay a very strong foundation for the development of youth hockey in the state for many years to come."
Through the program, the two-time Stanley Cup winning Colorado Avalanche will now play host to more than 50 free events annually throughout the state with the stated goal of bringing hockey to over 30,000 kids, ages 5-12, who otherwise may not have an opportunity to play. Participants in the program will get to keep an Avalanche-branded street hockey stick and ball to encourage future play beyond the clinics.
"Game On" is currently one of two programs that the Colorado Avalanche are undertaking - the other being the highly successful Mile High Mites "Learn-to-Play" program - in conjunction with the NHL and the NHLPA. Through these partnerships, youth hockey development in Colorado will see an investment of $1.1-million-dollars over the next three years as part of the League's Industry Growth Fund.
Another key element of "Game On" is the program's ability to provide events in current outdoor facilities and gyms, as well as to produce outdoor rinks at any location necessary. This flexibility will create new opportunities in areas where adequate facilities may not exist, exposure is low, or availability is limited. It will also help minimize costs for children and their families who are interested in the sport of hockey but find participation at the youth level to be financially prohibitive. By providing more than 50 free events throughout the states, "Game On" is uniquely positioned to help grow youth hockey throughout Colorado.
In a tremendous show of support for "Game On," Colorado Avalanche Executive Vice President and General Manager Joe Sakic was joined by Lt. Governor of Colorado Donna Lynne on Friday morning at the State Capitol to proclaim October 13, 2017 as Colorado Avalanche "Game On" Day.