Sioux Lookout Minor Hockey Association striving for safe season, seeks volunteers
Reeti Meenakshi Rohilla - Staff Writer
The Sioux Lookout Minor Hockey Association (SLMHA) is striving to continue their safe return to play, along with seeking additional volunteers to strengthen the association’s services. The association opened its doors to kids over two months ago, with a hope to run until late March. SLMHA’s website states, “As always, the success of this season will be determined by a team of volunteers who will help all our skaters develop and have fun...and we are always looking for more help! Our association becomes stronger every time someone steps forward to help out. Please contact us to sign up.”
Sioux Lookout Minor Hockey Association volunteers serve as on-ice helpers, coaches, trainers, or managers throughout a typical hockey season. The association’s website mentions that during the summer of 2020, members of the executive committee held meetings to create a plan for a safe and fun return to play in our community. The communications convener for SLMHA, Mike Laverty shared that the hockey association was mindful of the COVID-19 guidelines set by Hockey Canada and the additional rules in place by the Municipality of Sioux Lookout’s Recreational Department. He added, “There is a limit on how many people can be in the building and all who enter must wear a mask.” He clarified that the Recreation Centre has set a limit of 50 people on the ice and 50 in the building. “Spectators are allowed but right now it is one person per participant,” shared Laverty.
The hockey association opened registration on September 14, and as of September 30, had more than 195 participants registered among six age divisions. Laverty shared, “Unfortunately registration for the 2020-2021 season is over. Coaches are selecting their final rosters and participants are now being placed on teams.” He added that the association would begin hosting games with officials and timekeepers this week. “Our association has six age divisions. Participants are as young as three years old up to 18-year-old high school students! Most divisions are seeing similar numbers to last year. We have already hosted goalie clinics and two skills development camps. Each division has the option of running additional practices or camps throughout the year. We will definitely be hosting another goalie clinic in 2020 and 2021.”
SLMHA’s website shares that coaches and other volunteers are adjusting to many changes such as dressing room protocol. It states, “We know that 2020-2021 is going to be a hockey season like no other before. Although it sometimes feels like everything is different, the sound of skate blades cutting into fresh ice or children laughing as they chase a puck down the ice never changes.” Anyone interested in volunteering for the Sioux Lookout Minor Hockey Association can contact Laverty at (807) 738-1948, or email Laverty at [email protected].