Bulldogs launch skating program

The Hamilton Bulldogs Hockey Club and the Bulldogs Foundation, in coordination with the City of Hamilton, launched the Hamilton Bulldogs Skate The Dream program to break the barriers preventing local children from learning to skate and playing hockey.

The pilot project, which will be based out of Eastwood Arena in Hamilton’s North end, is an opportunity for up to 100 children between the ages of 6 to 10 to participate in a learn-to-skate program combined with a 3-on-3 learn-to-play hockey introductory program. Hamilton native and Stanley Cup champion Ric Nattress is the Honorary Chair of the program, and will also be providing on-ice instruction.

“We are proud to be partnering with the City to provide accessible, affordable play for those who might otherwise not get the chance to participate in hockey,” said Hamilton Bulldogs President and Governor, Bob McNamara. “It’s also a great opportunity for us to give back to the community as part of our 2012 AHL Outdoor Classic activities.

Registration for the program is now open, and will take place through referrals from partner organizations such as the Boys and Girls Clubs of Hamilton, North Hamilton Community Health Centre, Hamilton Waterfront Trust, Bennetto Public School, Hamilton Minor Hockey Council, St. Lawrence School, and J. Edgar Davie School. The cost for the full 10-week session is only $10.00 per child. This will include on-ice instruction, equipment loan if needed, and an outdoor skate at Ivor Wynne Stadium during the 2012 AHL Outdoor Classic presented by Molson and Boston Pizza. Each registrant will also receive two tickets for the program wrap party at the Sunday, March 4 Bulldogs home game against the Grand Rapids Griffins.

The Skate The Dream Equipment Drive is currently being run at over 20 locations in Hamilton, including Copps Coliseum during Hamilton Bulldogs home games. Those making a donation will also receive a complimentary ticket to the March 4 game and the opportunity to purchase additional tickets for this game for only $12. All the equipment will be cleaned and sterilized as per Public Health guidelines and stored at Eastwood Arena.

The Bulldogs next take to the ice when they face the Syracuse Crunch at Copps Coliseum on Friday, Jan. 6h, at 7:30 p.m.