Young players with the Ponoka Recreation Hockey Association in five to seven year age category enjoy a fun game March 4 during the association’s windup. The association had its largest attendance this year.

Young players with the Ponoka Recreation Hockey Association in five to seven year age category enjoy a fun game March 4 during the association’s windup. The association had its largest attendance this year.

Recreation hockey closes out the season

The season is done but for the Ponoka Recreation Hockey Association (PRHA) things are looking up for next year.

The season is done but for the Ponoka Recreation Hockey Association (PRHA) things are looking up for next year.

Registration was at its highest ever, explained president Greg Hutniak. The group had its windup March 4 with teams coming together to compete in fun games all day.

“With the highest volume of interest in our history, we knew that we needed to make some adjustments to our program,” explained Hutniak in an email.

The main goals for the group are to make the sport affordable and to create a family environment. The teams would play in central Alberta tournaments if possible but also, “During the regular season, each of our teams played on average two games per month, home and away.”

“Before the season even started on Oct. 3, we were at our maximum capacity of 120 players spread across six teams, boys and girls ages five to 17.”

Hutniak says with such dramatic growth there were a few growing pains but organizers made minor adjustments to the PRHA operations to keep players involved. He says there was a zero per cent attrition rate and more than 90 per cent involvement during the windup.

“The stands were full of supporters, the music was loud, and the players were out on the ice just doing what they loved to do, play hockey and have fun doing it,” explained Hutniak.

He added the board is now looking into making more adjustments for next season to meet the demands of its membership.