SAN JOSE, CA - The National Hockey League (NHL), San Jose Sharks, SAP, City of San Jose, and 25 kids from nearby Piedmont Middle School and Noble Elementary School participated in a ribbon cutting ceremony on January 24 to unveil a renovated outdoor street
hockey rink in Roosevelt Park. The NHL, San Jose Sharks Foundation, and SAP collectively donated $500,000 to the outdoor rink for much-needed upgrades. New hockey equipment was donated by Franklin Sports, the Official Street Hockey Partner of the NHL. As a legacy to the
2019 Honda NHL® All-Star, the newly renovated Roosevelt Park will increase access to hockey for community members year-round.
"Downtown San Jose is booming with recreational and entertainment opportunities and the San Jose Sharks are a vital component of this," said Raul Peralez, San Jose City Councilmember. "This quality play space is a testament to the partnership between the Department of Parks, Recreation and Neighborhood Services (PRNS), the San Jose Sharks, the NHL and SAP. When we all come together, the San Jose community and our youth benefit."
Construction efforts were spearheaded by the City of San Jose, who first opened the rink in 1995 to provide a safe and accessible space for children and families in the community. Today, residents had a first-look at the upgrades which include: a brand new all-weather floor surface, bleachers, dasher boards, and chain link fencing. Future improvements will include a water drainage system, and better lighting to be able to play at night.
"Since joining the NHL, the San Jose Sharks and our ownership group led by Dr. Hasso Plattner, have made it a priority to be an outstanding community partner," said John Tortora, President of the San Jose Sharks. "Renovating the Roosevelt outdoor rink is both a celebration of the NHL's All-Star Weekend returning to San Jose and a reaffirmation that our team remains committed to making a positive impact on the lives of youth and families throughout our City. We are proud to have worked with our tremendous partners at the National Hockey League, City of San Jose, and SAP to renovate this fantastic rink that will promote the game of hockey, encourage health and well-being, and continue to serve as a wonderful gathering place for families for many years."
NHL partner and street hockey equipment supplier Franklin Sports generously donated NHL- and Sharks-branded street hockey gear: 280 sticks, 24 goalie sticks, 12 sets of goalie equipment with Sharks-branded masks, chest protectors, and goalie pads; as well as hockey nets and street hockey balls.
"For more than 15 years the NHL has partnered with its Member Clubs to make meaningful contributions that help build vibrant communities that contribute to growing our sport," said Kim Davis, NHL Executive Vice President, Social Impact, Growth Initiatives & Legislative Affairs. "We see the positive impact playing hockey has on people of all ages, fostering a greater sense of teamwork, dedication, and perseverance - hockey's core values. This is another example of multiple groups working together, 'doing good and doing well,' and the NHL is proud to be part of this team."
The collective efforts to increase access to hockey also includes hockey programming. This year, Roosevelt Park will host a series of free youth hockey street tournaments for kids in ages 6-18 and Learn to Play™ hockey clinics. The outdoor rink will also be available for youth and adult pick-up hockey.
Special guests in attendance at today's ribbon cutting ceremony include NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, Hockey Hall of Famer and NHL Diversity Ambassador Willie O'Ree, San Jose Sharks President Jonathan Becher, as well as San Jose Sharks players Joe Pavelski, Brent Burns, and Erik Karlsson.
The event was held prior to the 2019 SAP NHL All-Star Skills™ on Friday, Jan. 25 (6 p.m. PT / 9 p.m. ET, NBCSN, CBC, SN, TVAS) and the 2019 Honda NHL® All-Star Game on Saturday, Jan. 26 (5 p.m. PT / 8 p.m. ET, NBC, CBC, SN, TVAS). The 2019 Honda NHL® All-Star Weekend marks the second time NHL All-Star activities will take place in San Jose. The Sharks previously hosted the event in 1997.
The Legacy initiative is an ongoing philanthropic endeavor in which the League and the local Club support community organizations in the host city of an NHL Event. Since 2003, the League, its Clubs and partners have donated more than $3.5 million to communities across North America. Legacy projects have aided thousands of hospital patients in recovery; helped at-risk youth and families gain better access to educational and vocational training; and provided greater access to people of all ages to learn and play hockey.