Rink opening puts summer on ice
The Park City Ice Arena is ready to offer welcome relief to locals as temperatures continue to climb. On July 1, the rink will open its doors for its third season, and at least for the summer, the rink will focus on camps.
Headlining the ice rink’s opening is former NHL-er Claude Lemieux and his AAA hockey camps for teens. The three-week program will run throughout the month of July and brings some of the best junior high and high school players in the U.S. and Canada. The skills camp will focus on these top players the first two weeks, and will welcome local talent the third week.
According to Jason Glidden, Park City Ice Arena Marketing and Events Coordinator, Lemieux has a home in the area and chose Park City because of its reputation as a prime destination location. The camps will run the first three weeks of July. Locals can find out more about the third week by visit http://www.lemieuxacademy.com.
"It will be really nice for local athletes to take advantage of," Lemieux said.
On the heels of Lemieux’s camp is the Rocky Mountain High School Hockey Camp, which will be held the last week of July. Also a skills camp, this program brings some of the best coaches and college players in the state up to Park City to help younger players hone their game.
"It’s the same concept as the Lemieux camp, but more locally focused," Glidden explained." It’s marketing to the Park City/Salt Lake/Wasatch teams. It’s great to get some good instruction"
Following on the camp theme is the rink’s first-ever figure skating camp run by the in-house pros. Glidden said that he has already received interest about the camp from kids outside of the state who will be vacationing in the area.
Glidden said that the advantage of many of these camps is that they offer both on-ice and off-ice training to give athletes a complete experience.
The U.S. Ski Team will also bring their camp to the ice, for a weekend’s worth of on-ice balance, speed and coordination work, culminating with a game on Monday night at 6 p.m.
There will also be opportunities for non-campers. The Adult Hockey league will start before July 1 and will continue A or B/C skill level divisions on Sunday and Tuesday nights. For those looking to improve their skills, the rink will hold a drop-in Monday night Skills and Drills program that features local and visiting instructors, including ex-pro hockey players Lemieux, Luc Robitaille, Andre Faust and Rick Tabaracci.
There will also be public skating sessions, for people looking to get out of the heat and enjoy some time skating.
For those looking to learn how to skate or play hockey, beginner and intermediate classes will be offered once again. Learn to Skate and Learn to Play Hockey classes will be held twice a week during the summer beginning July 29. The rink will also host two curling open houses on July 17 and July 26. The National Ability Center will also hold their sled hockey recreational program on Wednesday evenings starting July 2. Sled Hockey is like standard hockey, except, instead of standing up on skates, participants sit in a sled and maneuver with their arms using hockey sticks with picks on the ends.
"This is great opportunity for those who are looking to have some fun – out of the sun – this summer," Park City Ice Arena General Manager Stacey Noonan said.
This season, the rink will also adopt a resident program, similar to the one used at the Park City Racquet Club, where locals will receive a discount on various season passes. Resident passes, as well as all other passes will become computerized, so participants can "scan in" when they arrive at the rink. They will also continue to make the building available for birthday parties, corporate events and other gatherings.
In the coming year, the rink hopes to once again bring in events like the Fall Family Fest, the USA/Canada Sled Hockey game, a Utah Grizzlies Match and the Luc Robitaille Celebrity Tournament. Once-a-month free skating on Saturday will also return later in the summer.
Other programs hitting the ice this season:
– The new youth hockey association formed last year is under new leadership and hopes to grow the organization this season. In cooperation with the association, ice arena staff purchased 30 sets of youth hockey equipment so children can rent equipment for a nominal fee.
-The Park City Figure Skating Club currently has 35 members. They initiated club member status with the United State Figure Skating Association and won a first-place trophy at a skating competition in Rock Springs, Wyo. this past season. Arena staff overseeing the installation of a jump harness donated by Club secretary Sherry Pruka, so skaters will have the capability to learn how to jump and not hit the ice if their landing is not quite perfected. Club ice is available on Mondays and Thursdays at 4:30 p.m.
-The Speed Skating Club is open to youth and adults and is looking to increase its membership as well. Olympic gold medalist Eric Heiden supports the organization by handing out medals at local competitions. The club is fortunate to have the US Short Track Speed Skating Team practicing at the Oval in Kearns, and draws on high level instructors to teach technique to its members. Club ice will be on Thursday evenings and those interested can borrow club skates and try a session of the sport.
-The Curling Club will also start league meetings this fall.
For more information about the Park City Ice Arena and all of its programs, visit http://www.pcice.org or call 615-5700. The rink located at the intersection of U.S. 40 and S.R. 248 at Quinn’s Junction.
Program updates provided by Jason Glidden
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