Pelham Civic Complex to host Learn to Play Hockey program

Published 5:01 pm Sunday, November 10, 2013

By DREW GRANTHUM/Sports Writer

The Pelham Civic Complex will be hosting its first Learn to Play Hockey program, starting Dec. 4.

The program is a five-week course that will teach children ages 4-12 the fundamentals of the game of hockey, PCC Director of Hockey Randy Murphy said.

Murphy went on to say that the program is brand new to the Civic Complex, but came from a template put together by USA hockey.

“The potential for growth is great,” he said.

The program will meet every Wednesday — taking a week off at Christmas and New Years — from 5:45-6:30 p.m. Students will be shown the proper technique for in-game skating, how to handle a puck and how to pass and shoot.

Murphy said the program was faced with the task of trying to introduce potential players to a somewhat unfamiliar game. While many children grow up playing football, baseball or basketball, hockey is uncommon despite Pelham being a hotbed for the sport, Murphy said.

“That’s the biggest challenge,” he said. “We’re going to get some schools in here and tour the facility and experience skating for the first time. I think hockey is difficult to follow without knowing (the rules).”

The program will provide each participant with the necessary equipment, including helmets, skates, a stick and gloves.

In addition to on-ice fundamentals, Murphy said the program would teach the players off-ice etiquette as well.

(We’ll teach) the fundamentals and skills,” he said. “And how to treat the opponent with respect and respect the facility.”

Murphy said the city of Pelham had done a great job of supporting the program, but the Pelham Youth Hockey League sought to spread the game of hockey as well as promote the facility to other areas as well.

“It’s kind of a little pocket,” he said. “My job is to get outside the pocket and let them know what the game is all about.”

The cost of the program is $90, and requires no previous hockey experience.

For more information, contact Murphy at (205)-620-6448.