Approximately 40 Pee-Wee youth ice hockey players will lace their skates and compete in the inaugural Ace Bailey Children's Foundation's "Ace's Got Skills" competition on Thursday, September 9 at Chelsea Piers in honor of Ace Bailey, an 11-year veteran of the National Hockey League and two-time Stanley Cup Champion, who was aboard one of the airplanes that struck the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. Bailey, a Los Angeles Kings scout, had been en route to L.A. for the start of the 2001-02 season when he died.
The "Ace's Got Skills" program is modeled after the NHL's popular All-Star SuperSkills Competition, and gives boys and girls ages 11-12 the opportunity to test their skill level in the following categories: skating, shooting accuracy, puck handling, shot velocity, and goaltending. Beginning at 6 p.m. on Sept. 9, youngsters will gather at SkyRink at Chelsea Piers to take part in the competition. They will be welcomed by Bailey's widow, Katherine Bailey, and former New York Ranger Rod Gilbert
. A special video message will be delivered by Wayne Gretzky, who was mentored by Bailey.
This year, the NHL and six NHL Member Clubs - the Boston Bruins, Columbus Blue Jackets, Florida Panthers, New York Islanders, New York Rangers
and Washington Capitals - will host local and regional "Ace's Got Skills" competitions. Regional winners will face-off in a national championship in late Spring 2005 in Bailey's hometown of Boston.
The Ace Bailey Children's Foundation's mission is to fund pediatric programs that improve the hospital experience for sick and injured children and their families with the goal of keeping alive Bailey's passion for the well being of kids. The NHL is a proud supporter of the "Ace's Got Skills" program, which is being run by RDW Sports Marketing, Inc., a full-service sports marketing firm specializing in the development of community outreach and grass-roots marketing programs for professional sports organizations.
For registration details for the "Ace's Got Skills" program, please log on to www.acesgotskills.com
. For information on the Ace Bailey Children's Foundation, please go to www.acebailey.com