A group of young hockey players is working extremely hard off the ice to ensure they can represent our city proudly at a major international hockey tournament.
The Sudbury Lakers AA Novice squad recently captured the title at the Red Hamill Silver Stick Hockey Tournament in mid-December.
This qualified the group of seven and eight-year-olds to compete in the International Silver Stick Tournament, set for this age division in St. Clair Shores, Mich., beginning Jan. 24.
The cost of renting a coach bus to take the players and parents to St. Clair Shores, located not far from Detroit, is $3,000, and the total cost of the four-day excursion will likely run between $6,000 and $8,000, said team manager Tom McIntyre.
?We?re trying to raise as much money as possible before we head out on the trip,? said McIntyre. ?The parents have decided we?re going no matter what, but it would be nice to cut the costs as much as possible.?
The entire team went on a beer bottle drive asking residents to donate bottles from the holiday season and this raised in excess of $600.
The players and parents plan another beer bottle drive in the next week or so and held a hockey pool among parents, friends and team supporters that raised another $400.
This weekend members of the Lakers team will be holding a tag day asking for public donations outside the entrance to Steve?s Your Independent Grocer in the Sudbury Supermall.
The chance to compete in a tournament against teams from across Ontario and the United States is an opportunity the players will cherish for many years to come, said McIntyre.
?We have a great bunch of kids on this team and they?re so excited about going to the international Silver Stick.?
As far as he knows the parents of all 14 players on the team are taking the time off to make the trip with their children for the big event.
Coaches Bob Bonin and Mike Boisvenue and trainers Marc LeBreton and James O?Brien are just as excited as he is about making the trip, said McIntyre.
Members of the Lakers AA Novice squad are Dylan West, Curtis Clark, Taylor Conaty, Andrew Cummings, Marcie Tellier, Justin LeBreton, Charlie Venedam, Derek Caron, Mario Parisotto, Jacob Boisvenue, Austin McIntyre, Jacob Bonin, Jimmy Roy and Travis O?Brien.
Anyone wishing to contribute funds are asked to contact the team manager at 524-8652.