Good morning and welcome to "Cats & Coffee," a weekly segment, presented by Koffee Kult, in which we serve up an exciting look at what's on deck for your Florida Panthers. Like our friends at Koffee Kult, this forecast serves up only the best -- so sit back, sip and enjoy our latest brew of news, notes and information!
It's never too late to lace up a pair of skates for the first time.
With the recent launch of another Florida Panthers "Learn to Skate" program, the opportunity for you or your children to feel the ice beneath your feet has never been easier. Designed for people ages four and above with little to no ice-skating experience, the program offers everything you'll need to get started.
Every participant in the program not only receives eight weeks of incredibly supportive on-ice training from certified instructors, but also a pair of brand-new hockey skates or figure skates - you never forget your first pair! -- to use during each of the sessions and keep upon the program's conclusion.
The program will be held at four local rinks in South Florida, including: Florida Panthers IceDen (Coral Springs), The Rink on the Beach (formerly Glacier Ice & Snow Arena- Pompano Beach), Palm Beach Ice Works (West Palm Beach) and Palm Beach Skate Zone (Lake Worth).
At the end of the program, any participant looking to further their training or continue on into the world of either hockey or figure skating will be given plenty of information on all available skating avenues. The cost for the program is as follows:
Ages 12 & Under: $125
Ages 13 to 17: $175
Ages 18 & Older: $200
For more information or to register, please visit FloridaPanthers.com/LearnToSkate.
THE NEW BATCH
Already know how to skate? Then the "Learn to Play" program is more up your ally.
In an effort to inspire the next generation of hockey players and fans, the "Learn to Play" program was created in 2016 for boys and girls ages 5-9 as a way to introduce them to the sport at an affordable cost.
In conjunction with the NHL, NHLPA and USA Hockey, every participant in the program not only receives six weeks of on-ice training from Panthers Alumni & USA Hockey certified coaches, but also a full set of brand-new hockey equipment, such as ice skates, sticks, helmets and pads. The total cost? Just $175.
"The biggest thing is getting these kids out here and getting them all that equipment," Panthers youth hockey manager Matt Janusz said. "That's the first step. We want to get them out on the ice, take all those hurdles out of the way of parents and kids. We want to help them every step of the way, show them how fun playing hockey can be and get them hooked."
The "Learn To Play" curriculum is designed in conjunction with USA Hockey's "Gold Standard," which utilizes an age-appropriate, long-term developmental structure for athletes known as the American Development Model. This model is used to ensure the program's structure is both fun and effective.
For more information on the "Learn to Play" program, click HERE.
Also, if you're an adult looking to learn the game, check out the "Adult Learn to Play" HERE.
AIR SHOW CONTEST
Show us how you support the Panthers for a chance to win tickets to the Fort Lauderdale Air Show.
To enter, reply to the tweet below with a photo of yourself wearing your favorite Panthers gear with the hashtags #OneTerritory and #FortLauderdaleAirShow. On April 30 -- only one day left! - one winner will be awarded both a Panthers swag bag and two VIP tickets to the Air Show, which will run from May 4-5.
CATS CLIP OF THE WEEK
What superpowers do your favorite Panthers wish they had? Find out in the video below!
Video: Cats Talk Superheroes
CATS IN THE COMMUNITY
From the arrival of Coach Q to his love of fantasy baseball, Panthers goaltender Roberto Luongo covered it all during his latest appearance on the Territory Talk podcast.
COLD COFFEE (IN CASE YOU MISSED IT)
-- Aleksander Barkov has been named a finalist for the Lady Byng Trophy.
-- The Panthers will play a preseason game against the Montreal Canadiens on September 18 in Renous, New Brunswick.
-- How's Mackenzie Weegar spending the next few months? Find out in the latest installment of the "Summer Plans" series.
-- What does Aaron Ekblad have in common with Bobby Orr and Denis Potvin? Check out his "Season Rewind" to find out.
-- Frank Vatrano hopes to help Team USA end its gold-medal drought at the 2019 IIHF World Championship.
-- The Panthers have committed to privately financing the restoration and revitalization of the historic War Memorial Auditorium in Fort Lauderdale.
-- From upsets to expectations, Randy Moller chimes in on the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
-- A multi-point madman, re-live Jonathan Huberdeau's breakout campaign in his "Season Rewind."