When I made the Dallas Stars Ice Girls, I did not just gain the privilege to be a part of a world-class team and organization, but I gained 22 new sisters. It is tradition every year to have what we call “Rookie Weekend” at the beginning of the season. It gives the new team a chance to bond with one another outside of our normal practice or game day settings. Being rookie and not quite knowing what to expect, I was really excited as the weekend approached.
We started off the night by cooking dinner and eating together while we watched a Stars game. After the game, the vets played last season's end of the year video. This was one of my favorite times of the weekend as it really showed the rookies what we had to look forward over the upcoming season and how many wonderful experiences we would get to enjoy with each other. Then our big sisters on the team surprised us with goodie baskets filled with our favorite things. It felt so great to know that I had 22 wonderful sisters to look out for me and help me through this year, whether that meant having someone to talk to, or helping me get ready for my first game. The rest of the night we played games and got to know each other better.
After breakfast the next morning we stepped outside to find a huge inflatable bounce house and slip-n-slide. We spent hours enjoying them and played lots of fun, team-building games. There was one where we all had to fit on a square of fabric just big enough to fit all 23 of us, and we were challenged to flip the fabric over without having anyone touch the grass. It seemed impossible at first just to figure out a plan and to get everyone on board, after a few tries we finally succeeded. Our director did not let us give up and in the end it was worth it.
I had a great time at the sleepover and getting to spend time with new teammates. I feel so glad to be a part of a team with such wonderful people. I will always remember the laughs and fun at rookie weekend, but the best part was getting closer to my sisters.