Hockey is one of the most expensive and time consuming sports in the world. If you’re starting your kid in a youth hockey program, you’re going to be spending between $500-$1,000 for equipment, followed by paying to join a youth hockey program that will run you just as much. So, you’ve got your equipment and your program, you think your done? Nope.
After that, you also have to think about hotel fees, food, gas, etc. for all of the travel the sport requires. Like I said, it’s not cheap. So, by now, if you’re a parent thinking about getting your child into hockey, you might be a little hesitant.This may not help: not only will you be spending a lot of money, think about all the time you will need to mark on your calendars. Some youth hockey programs hold practice 2-3 times a week, followed by two games or more depending on if you’re attending a tournament.
On top of all of this, let’s say your kid has never played before and you’re just getting started. There are some questions you don’t even know the answers to yet, which could make you question that huge investment up front.
What if your kid doesn’t even like playing? What if your kid plays 3 games and then all of a sudden says I’m all set, never mind?
If that’s the case, you have now spent a ton of money, spent lots of time organizing your schedule, and for what?
Well, I am here to offer an alternative to all other youth hockey programs. A best kept secret in the 518’s world of youth sports programs, if you will. Corinth Youth Hockey.
Have you ever heard of it? Corinth is a small town at the northern border of Saratoga County (fun fact: it’s also noted as the snowshoe capital of the world). With a population a little over 6,000 and located just 96 miles south of Lake Placid, the location of the infamous 1980 Winter Olympics for Team USA, Corinth is a cool town doing super cool things for the families who want to get involved in youth hockey.
If you haven’t heard of the league, I’ll break down the Top 5 Reasons Why Corinth Youth Hockey is One of the Best Hockey Programs in the area (and probably everywhere).
Reason 1: For the Last 37 Years, Corinth Hockey Has Not Charged Anyone to Play For Their Program
Yeah that’s right, I said it. For 37 YEARS, this program has helped families of all incomes play this game. It does not throw you to the curb if you don’t have the finances to play the best game in the world. If you don’t have it, that’s fine. About once a year they have a fundraiser where people are asked to make cookies or fudge that helps raise the funds needed to keep it going. In hindsight, baking cookies for a few hours is WAY better than dishing out $1,000+ just to sign up.
Reason 2: Corinth Youth Hockey Supplies Equipment and Teaches You The Game
If you have a helmet and a stick, Corinth hockey will fit you with the proper equipment necessary to play in a wicked fun league. Every year, the kids go to the gym where they pick out the right equipment to wear with help from the coaches. Instead of paying a ton of money before they even decide if they like the sport, your kid is ready to go, thanks to the people of Corinth.
Does your kid know how to skate? Doesn’t matter. Thanks to the volunteer coaches of Corinth hockey, they can teach you anything from the basics to more advanced type of hockey skills that your child will need to succeed. I’ll get more into this later, but the people there are awesome and that’s what you want when you’re throwing your child into a new sporting experience for the first time.
Reason 3: Every Day is Your Winter Classic
Bundle up, it’s cold out there. Corinth Youth Hockey, for the most part, takes place outside. If you’ve ever watched the Winter Classic on New Years, Pierre McGuire will be drooling talking about how special it is to play outside, and it is. However, in Corinth it’s just another day. The kids get to play outside in one of the coolest rinks I’ve ever played on. Look good, feel good, wheel good and there is nothing better than being outside on the ice with your friends. Nostalgia, look it up.
Reason 4: Playing in an Ice Rink is Like Playing for the Stanley Cup
This is so silly to me now, but when I was a kid playing in this organization we would go to the Saratoga rinks and I felt like I was in the show. I’ve played in just about every rink you can think of now, but I can still look back and reflect on what it felt like to play in a rink for the first couple of times. I think if you were to ask any player who has played in Corinth they would say the same exact thing. Such a special feeling.
Reason 5: The People Who Help Run the League are the Best
David Barrass has run this league for 37 years, meaning he was there when I was there. Why does he do it? Because he loves the game and he loves the fact that he can help kids love it too. It’s for sure not a glamorous job, but every year they get it done. My friend, Dan White, spends most of his off time at the rink doing tons a different things. He fixes the scoreboard, puts up the boards and most importantly makes sure the ice is up to par.
What does that mean? When it’s 10 o’clock at night in January, while we’re inside sipping some cocoa, crushing Netflix and being warm, Dan, with the help of other volunteers, is outside freezing his ass off in -20 degree weather watering the ice so the kids can play. What other youth hockey program does that for the kids? That’s right, none of them.
If you are interested in donating towards a great cause or have any extra equipment laying around the ice, or have ANY questions regarding this program, send an email to email@example.com.