Newark, N.J. — Hockey associations throughout New Jersey will be celebrating Try Hockey For Free Day on Saturday. The national initiative, run by USA Hockey as part of its Come Play Hockey Month, helps introduce kids to the sport. Families looking to get involved in the free clinics can visit www.tryhockeyforfree.com to find a local participating rink.
The New Jersey Devils will host a clinic at AmeriHealth Pavilion with 40 participants from the Hockey in Newark program. The event will be run by former Devils captain and 1995 Stanley Cup Champion Bruce Driver, New Jersey Devils staff and Hockey in Newark coaches. AmeriHealth Pavilion will be one of nearly 500 rinks across the country hosting Play Hockey For Free events for boys and girls ages four to nine.
Similar to events around the nation, Driver and the staff leading the Devils clinic will teach the fundamentals of hockey, including skating, stickhandling, passing, shooting and teamwork. The ice will be divided into four zones where the kids will be spend 10 minutes at each station with an experienced hockey professional. The clinic will conclude with the opportunity to scrimmage in 3-on-3 cross-ice games.
Participants will receive souvenir hockey sticks, USA Hockey jerseys, a gift bag with Devils and USA Hockey giveaways, a participation certificate and a special Devils jerseys.
Try Hockey For Free Day, which the Devils have been involved in since 2011, is one of hundreds of events the team organizes each year to help grow the game of hockey in Newark and the state of New Jersey. Hockey in Newark, an organization supported by the Devils, first began as a “feeder source” for Newark’s East Side High School, which in 2003 nearly had to shutter its ice hockey team. Since the Devils partnership starting that year, the program has grown to include more than 150 participants.