Islanders forward Nate Thompson knows the importance of community support and over the past week, he has given back to that same community that supporting himself and the New York Islanders. Thompson heard through several of the players as the team was packing up for the summer in late April, that a number of players were returning at various dates throughout the summer to make appearances at camps and schools, so he made sure to put his name on the list. Starting on July 20th and lasting through July 24th, Thompson took part in a week's worth of community events.
“The aspect of what we do is an absolute pleasure because we get to make kids
smile just by saying hi, autographing a picture or slapping high fives," Thompson said. "When I heard of the summer events I knew that I had to put my name down. Throughout the week we visited a couple of summer camps and the kids were thrilled to have us. Hockey isn’t a game that normally gets played during the summertime so it was nice to be able to show the kids that you can play all year long,” said Thompson.
Thompson began the first half of the week attending events with his teammate, defenseman Bruno Gervais. The Islanders I.C.E. Tour visited the Early Discoveries Program in Ronkonkoma, the Islanders Team Store in Hicksville and the Lawrence Woodmere Academy in Woodmere. The later half of the week, Thompson visited the Theodore Roosevelt Summer Recreation Program in Oyster Bay and the Tappen Beach Summer Recreation Program in Glen Head.
At every event Thompson had hundreds of children eagerly awaiting the chance
to meet him. For most of the campers this was the first time they had ever met a professional athlete. Each camper was able to get Thompson’s autograph, take pictures, and even get a few tips on playing the game of hockey.
“I had a fun week back on Long Island," Thompson said. "Every camp we visited welcomed us with open arms. It is always a great thing when you can keep the game of hockey fresh in everyone’s minds. I look forward to seeing everyone during the season at the Coliseum."Click here to see where Islander players Kyle Okposo and Blake Comeau will visit next week when they travel with the Islanders I.C.E. Tour.