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Washington Capitals Donate 40 sets of Hockey Equipment to the Baltimore Youth Hockey

by Staff Writer / Washington Capitals
ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals youth hockey office and members of the Capitals alumni association, including Peter Bondra, Sylvain Cote, Alan Hangsleben, Gord Lane and Gary Rissling, visited Baltimore’s Mimi DiPietro Family Skating Center on Feb. 16 for an on-ice clinic with 40 children from the area.

The Capitals alumni put the children through a variety hockey drills during the hour-long clinic. The children learned different puckhandling skills, shooting techniques and went through speed drills including racing around the rink playing tag. At the end of the clinic the Washington Capitals and the NHL, as part of the USA Hockey ONE GOAL program, donated 40 sets of hockey equipment to the Mount Pleasant and Mimi DiPietro ice rinks for the Baltimore Youth Hockey Club. CLICK HERE to watch Baltimore’s WBAL-TV video of the event.

“Our goal is to grow the sport of hockey, and the most effective way is to make it accessible to everyone,” said Peter Robinson, the Capitals coordinator of amateur hockey and fan development. “Programs like the one here in Baltimore are vital to the expansion of hockey in our community and provide kids with new opportunities to try a sport that they may not come in to contact with that often. This equipment donation will help keep the program going for years to come.”

“As we face budget deficits that threaten recreational activities for our most vulnerable young people, I am extremely pleased to join the Washington Capitals in a partnership that will benefit our city’s youth for years to come,” Baltimore City Council president Bernard C. “Jack” Young said. “Getting this brand new equipment and spending the afternoon learning from Capitals’ legends is a dream come true for these kids.”

Each Sunday the Baltimore Youth Hockey Club puts on an ice hockey experience for dozen of underprivileged boys and girls from East and Southeast Baltimore. The 15-week program focuses on hockey instructions and team building for boys and girls ages seven to 14 in a safe, stable and fun environment. The children are outfitted and loaned new and used hockey equipment for their use throughout the program.

“The Patterson Park Stars program is being recognized as a stable, positive, fun, learning environment for kids who would otherwise not be given or allowed the opportunity to learn to skate and play the game of ice hockey due to demographics, family dynamics and economic hardship,” said Mallory Richards, director of the Patterson Park Stars program. “This program provides an outlet away from the streets and also gets the kids involved in a team effort and exercising.”

This visit and donation is part of the Capitals, and the NHL's Hockey is for Everyone Month. The Hockey is for Everyone initiative provides support to developmental ice hockey and street hockey programs as a positive and meaningful outlet for children and young teens to learn, compete and grow. The initiative provides access to unique hockey experiences to more than 300,000 children annually in more than 30 nonprofit youth ice hockey organizations and 1,600 schools and community centers across North American as part of the NHL Street grass roots program.
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