Hayley Wickenheiser, four-time Olympic Gold Medallist and Order of Canada recipient, plays hockey with novice players during the Canadian Tire Wickenheiser Female World Hockey Festival hockey tournament, also known as WickFest. (Photo: Robert Shaer)

Hayley Wickenheiser says women’s hockey has ‘come a long way’ at Surrey event

Olympic gold medallist in Surrey for WickFest tournament

While dozens of novice hockey players skated around Arena #3 at the Surrey Sport & Leisure Complex on Saturday (Feb. 2), there was one player who stood out.

Hayley Wickenheiser, four-time Olympic gold medallist and Order of Canada recipient, was on the ice with the girls aged six to eight for a couple of recreational games during the Canadian Tire Hayley Wickenheiser Female World Hockey Festival tournament, also known as WickFest.

RELATED: New WickFest hockey event in Surrey welcomes 800 girls for more than just games

Asked how the girls reacted to getting to play with her, Wickenheiser was humble.

A lot of them probably don’t know who I am. I mean, they know because they came to my event here, so their parents have probably told them, but it’s a new generation, really,” she said.

Wickenheiser said she told the girls they get to carry the next generation into the next few winter Olympics.

“I think all the women we’ve had here as hockey players are role models. When I grew up, I had (Wayne) Gretzky and (Mark) Messier and others and now they have women on the national team and they’re household names many of them. It’s come a long way since I started.”

“I love being on the ice with the Timbits. It’s where you remember hockey to be the most pure and fun when you were a kid; it’s just going out to play — no whistles, no face-offs, drop the puck and play. That’s the way the game, I think, is truly meant to be.”

Now in its ninth year, WickFest is not just a hockey tournament, Wickenheiser said.

“People come here and they get hockey, but I want it to be a professional development weekend for kids and girls in hockey.”

In the years since the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, Wickenheiser said she thinks women’s and girls’ hockey has really grown in B.C.

This is the first time Surrey has hosted WickFest which runs from Jan. 31 to Feb. 3.

For more info on the event, visit wickfest.com.

READ ALSO: Hockey history in Surrey as Team India comes to play



lauren.collins@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Lauren on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Hayley Wickenheiser, four-time Olympic Gold Medallist and Order of Canada recipient, speaks to novice players during the Canadian Tire Wickenheiser Female World Hockey Festival hockey tournament, also known as WickFest. (Photo: Robert Shaer)

Just Posted

Heritage rail to remain closed for both July and August

Fraser Valley Heritage Rail Society may open Cloverdale Station in September

‘Trauma equals addiction’ – why some seek solace in illicit substances

Part 2: Many pushed into addiction by ‘toxic stress,’ says White Rock psychologist

Honks, sirens and thumbs-up at ‘Keep the RCMP in Surrey’ rally outside city hall

‘Many many Surreyites turned out supporting #keepthercmpinsurreybc,’ posted one protester

Proposed White Rock development a ‘nightmare’ for Elm Street neighbours

Density, traffic, loss of views among chief concerns of residents

Delta launches online engagement portal

“Let’s Talk Delta” offers variety of feedback methods including surveys, polls, forums and Q&A boards

B.C. records 62 new COVID-19 cases, two deaths since Friday

Province has just over 200 active cases

Cold and wet weather has corn farmers waiting across the Fraser Valley

Usually the crop is ready July 5-12 but it’s still a few more days from perfection, says local farmer

Canadians torn on scaling back COVID-19 benefits to save money: poll

Of those surveyed, 78 per cent said they were worried about the size of the deficit

Hotel rooms for B.C. homeless too hasty, NDP government told

Businesses forced out, but crime goes down, minister says

Wage subsidy will be extended until December amid post-COVID reopening: Trudeau

Trudeau said the extension will ‘give greater certainty and support to businesses’

B.C. government prepares for COVID-19 economic recovery efforts

New measures after July consultation, Carole James says

COVID-19 exposure on Vancouver flight

The Air Canada 8421 flight travelled from Kelowna to Vancouver on July 6

Double homicide investigation leads Vancouver police to Chilliwack

A VPD forensics unit was in Chilliwack Saturday collecting evidence connected to East Van murders

VIDEO: Former Abbotsford resident giving away $1,000

Langley native Alex Johnson creates elaborate treasure hunt to give away cash

Most Read