This Friday marks the start of the sixth annual Hockey Weekend Across an event that has grown in its scope and influence in a very short time. Spearheaded by USA Hockey and the National Hockey League, the big weekend will see hockey celebrated across the country.
Each day of the festive weekend will bear a different theme, starting on Friday with "Wear Your Favorite Jersey Day." Whether it's a favorite NHL, college or minor-league team, fans across the United States are encouraged to show their support by donning their prized jerseys and submitting photos on Facebook and Twitter, using the hashtag #HWAA.
The celebration continues on Saturday with "Try Hockey Day," a unique opportunity for men, women and children across the nation to experience the game. With some 200 rinks nationwide hosting free clinics, thousands of people will have the opportunity to enjoy hockey. A list of participating rinks is available for those interested in being involved at HockeyWeekendAcrossAmerica.com.
The weekend caps off with "Celebrate Local Hockey Heroes Day" on Sunday, a day in which local communities are encouraged to honor their area hockey heroes. Fans across the country can spotlight their own personal hockey hero at the Hockey Weekend Across America website.
With events being hosted from Hartford to Fairbanks, from Oakland to Kansas City, this very special weekend culminates in Hockey Day in America, which will take place on Sunday. NHL Network and NHL.com will provide full coverage of the big day, starting with a special event hosted by the New York Rangers at Trump Rink in historic Central Park, which will provide the scenic backdrop for nine hours of U.S.-themed hockey coverage.
It all leads up to a full slate of NHL action, starting with a doubleheader beginning on NBC at noon. In the day's first matchup, Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and the Pittsburgh Penguins come to Buffalo to take on Thomas Vanek, Ryan Miller and the Sabres. Following that game, the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings travel to Chicago to face off against the high-flying Blackhawks.
The festivities will then move to NBC Sports Network, which will broadcast a Stanley Cup Playoff rematch between the Washington Capitals and New York Rangers.
Hockey fans are encouraged to chime in over the course of the day via social media by using the hashtag #HockeyDay.
For any additional information about Hockey Weekend Across America or Hockey Day in America, fans can visit NHL.com or watch the NHL Network.