A young skater with the Ponoka Recreation Hockey Association gets into the spirit of the game Dec. 2 during an all day invitational. Photo by Jeffrey Heyden-Kaye

Ponoka recreation hockey hosts special invitational day

The group has seen major growth in recent years adding more teams to its roster

Things are looking up for the Ponoka Recreation Hockey Association (PRHA), which has seen so much growth its teams have full rosters.

To celebrate a positive year, the association held a special invitational Dec. 2 at the Ponoka Culture and Recreation Complex, explained president Greg Hutniak. It was the first time doing an invitational.

From 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. the association’s eight teams competed with other recreation hockey teams in a no-hit, no-slapshot day. “We decided that we wanted to promote rec. hockey as best we could.”

“We also wanted to use this day to give back to the sport and give back to the community,” said Hutniak, pointing out that they held 50/50 draws and a special food raising challenge for the Ponoka Food Bank.

“We asked our visiting teams and our home teams to come out and support the Ponoka Food Bank and kind of make it a bit of a challenge,” he explained.

Along with the food bank challenge, players from the Ponoka Stampeders came out to help referee the games. They showcased the Stampeders by helping referee in Stampeders’ uniforms.

Consistent growth

“This year we grew by at least 25 to 30 per cent,” said Hutniak.

There’s 152 athletes this season, up from 124 last season, in the PRHA, which meant the association had to add two more teams to its roster.

Hutniak feels this type of growth means the association is doing the right thing for its members. The board of directors has grown and interest in the power skating programs hosted by PRHA is strong.

“This year the board has put together a program that for each of the different age categories we want to focus on certain skill development,” said Hutniak.

The kids get a chance to learn about team sports and the game of hockey without the distraction of hits and slap shots, he added.

Demand is high, said Hutniak, pointing out that some players had to be turned away this year. That being said, he expects to see two more teams added to the association’s list next year.

“Most of our teams are at 20 players,” said Hutniak.


Young athletes in the 8-10 years Ponoka Recreation Hockey group celebrate after a goal Dec. 2. The big day was an invitational for recreation hockey groups to Ponoka. Ponoka recreation hockey has seen big growth in recent years. Photo by Jeffrey Heyden-Kaye

Just Posted

Almost Midnight Madness almost upon us

It’s the most magical night of the year — if you like… Continue reading

Ponoka Schools celebrate Remembrance Day

Tributes in song, poems and letters to home

‘It hurts’: Indigenous Alberta boy, 5, comes home with braid undone’

Trouble at school leads to conversation on reconciliation, outpouring of support

VIDEO: Hong Kong police shoot protester, man set on fire

It was the second protester shot since the demonstrations began in early June

Sportsnet fires Don Cherry after negative comments about immigrants

Don Cherry had said immigrants don’t wear poppies like other Canadians do

Trudeau’s new cabinet: Gender parity because it’s 2019? Or due to competence?

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will soon appoint his new cabinet

Canada among three G20 countries least likely to hit emissions targets

It says Canada, South Korea and Australia are the farthest off

Conservatives’ Scheer wants Trudeau to open Parliament Nov. 25

That’s five days after Justin Trudeau is scheduled to swear in a new cabinet

Canadians mark Remembrance Day this morning

This year exactly 101 years to the day after the end of the First World War

Zombie debt will haunt more Canadians as scourge of indebtedness rises: experts

Total debt per consumer has surged to $71,979 in the second quarter

Harvest a struggle in Alberta, Saskatchewan, but a miracle in Manitoba

Hail over the summer destroyed most of the corn crop in southeastern Alberta

Sportsnet apologizes for Don Cherry’s anti-immigrant comments

Outrage was building online on Sunday with many on Twitter calling for Cherry to be fired

Most Read