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Summer on ice: Opportunities for children to try ice hockey during camps, free events

Updated: Apr. 16, 2021 at 2:56 PM EDT
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WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - Youth hockey continues to grow in popularity across the country.

In Wilmington, the Junior Seahawks program invites boys and girls to see what the sport is all about with camps planned for this summer.

The first camp is June 1 to 4 at the Wilmington Ice House, with UNCW Head Coach Rich Brouwer, UNCW Assistant Coach Pat Perry, & Youth Hockey Director at the Wilmington Ice House, Coach Tim Mckeag leading the courses.

Brody Welte, who is with the program, also said that the group will host a second camp and a “Try Hockey For Free Day” but those details are still being finalized.

Welte said there are precautions in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“Our kids have to wear masks right now to follow the governors orders but thankfully we were able to complete our seasons last year and we’ve had our programs continue on,” he said. “We just have to take precautions and as an association and as a business as far as the ice rink is concerned, we follow the guidelines to the best of our ability. So, we’ve had hockey continue throughout the pandemic.”

Figures from USA Hockey show that while most of the youth players in the sport are boys, there is growing interest in the sport from girls.

According to numbers from 2018, more than 320,000 boys played the sport. The number for girls was 60,983.

Welte said the Junior Seahawks welcome both boys and girls.

“This is the cool thing: I was our coach this year and we had a couple girls on our team and one of the girls was one of our best players,” he said. “So, this is absolutely open to boys, girls, men and women.”

To learn more about the Junior Seahawks, click here.

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