The New York Rangers today announced the creation of a girls youth hockey initiative that will seek to inspire and empower girls of all ages through the sport of hockey. U.S. Women's Hockey Olympic Gold Medalist Amanda Kessel will serve as an official ambassador to Junior Rangers Girls Hockey, which includes 13 rinks across the Tri-State area that will host various youth hockey programs, including a recreational league. Junior Rangers Girls Hockey will be tailored specifically to get girls on the ice and grow female participation in the sport, creating accessibility and opportunities that might not currently be available.
Junior Rangers Girls Hockey will help to alleviate the lack of gender specific options that leads to lower entry and retention rates for female hockey players at the 11-14 age level. An Under-14 recreation league comprised of teams at 13 Tri-State Area rinks will provide a low-cost opportunity for girls ages 14 and under to play against their peers.
"This program will provide the necessary tools and access to give girls who already love hockey a competitive place to play and inspire future players to lace up their skates," said Kristin Bernert, SVP of Business Operations, MSG Sports, "Studies show the impact that playing sports can have on girls' lives and we're confident Junior Rangers Girls Hockey will be a meaningful addition to the many ways the Rangers grow the game in the Tri-State area."
"Having played the game at the highest level, it's a great privilege for me to be able to help girls gain more access to hockey," said Amanda Kessel, U.S. Women's Hockey Olympic Gold Medalist, "To be able to grow the girls' game alongside the New York Rangers is a tremendous opportunity and honor. I'm excited to lend my voice and skills to get more girls involved in the sport."
Rinks participating in the recreational league include Skyland's Ice World (Stockholm, NJ), Protec Ponds (Somerset, NJ), ProSkate Ice Arena (South Brunswick, NJ), Union Sports Arena (Union, NJ), Danbury Ice Arena (Danbury, CT), Sports Center of CT (Shelton, CT), Brewster Ice Arena (Brewster, NY), Ice Time Sports Complex (Newburgh, NY), Mid-Hudson Civic Center (Poughkeepsie, NY), Long Island Sports Hub (Syosset, NY), Long Beach Arena (Long Beach, NY) Dix Hills Ice Rink (Dix Hills, NY) and Floyd Hall Arena (Little Falls, NJ).
For more information about Junior Rangers Girls Hockey and to sign up visit newyorkrangers.com/girlshockey.