North Delta’s 2017 Learn to Play team pose for a group photo at the North Delta Recreation Centre. (Contributed photo)

North Delta hockey gives kids a chance to play with Canucks

The Vancouver Canucks’ Learn to Play program is coming back to North Delta this October

This October, North Delta kids wanting to get a taste of ice hockey will be able to do so with a little help from the Lower Mainland’s favourite hockey team.

The Vancouver Canucks’ Learn to Play program will be partnering with the North Delta Minor Hockey Association for the third year in a row. Jessica Mann, North Delta Hockey’s division manager for ages five to eight, has been working with the program for the last two years. Her youngest son was in it last year.

“It’s been so popular, it’s really run smoothly,” she said. “Of course, the first couple years, getting the kinks out, trying to figure out what works and what doesn’t. This year, it seems like it’s running smoothly.”

Learn to Play is designed to give future hockey players between the ages of five and nine a chance to try the sport without paying the high fees associated with a full-season team. The six-week program costs $75 and goes for an hour each week starting in October (Mann isn’t yet sure exactly when).

During the program, which takes place at Sungod Arena, kids will learn basic on-ice hockey skills from North Delta mentors and former Canucks players including Jyrki Lumme and Kirk McLean.

SEE ALSO: Semiahmoo Minor Hockey, Canucks help youth learn the game

In addition to instruction, the $75 fee gets players a set of equipment donated by the Canucks. This includes a helmet with cage, shoulder pads, elbow pads, hockey gloves, hockey pants, shin guards, skates, socks, stick, an equipment bag and a jersey.

“You can’t buy a helmet in hockey right now for $75,” Mann said. “Hockey is not a cheap sport.”

“This is meant for those kids that are new to hockey, or even those families that economically maybe can’t afford the equipment,” she continued. “They can get that and give their kids an opportunity to do something different.”

Registrants will be fitted for their equipment sometime in the fall, and the program will start after that.

In the past two years, interest in the Canucks Learn to Play program has grown exponentially. Although there were only between 25 to 35 registered in its first year, around 50 kids signed up last year. This year, Mann has another 50 spots available, although 26 are already filled.

“It’s just kind of snowballed,” Mann said. “I wish we could take 200 kids, but unfortunately we don’t have the manpower for that.”

Registration will be available for just North Delta residents for the first 40 spots. The remaining 10 will be open to kids from other municipalities that do not already have a Learn to Play program in their community.

Interested parties can register by emailing Mann at h14dm@ndhockey.com, or by going to the Canucks website at learntoplay.nhl.com/canucks.

Correction: The age range Mann manages was incorrectly identified in an earlier version of this article. It has been correct, and the North Delta Reporter regrets the error.



grace.kennedy@northdeltareporter.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Supportive housing opponent says 110-year-old document should prevent development

Proposed site for Cloverdale project is on land gifted to city by Joseph Shannon in 1908

Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner bids farewell in tearful State of City Address

Outgoing mayor announces Director of Housing, looks back at Surrey’s evolution, and pokes fun at her ‘media missteps’

Tenants fighting ‘renovictions’ at Cloverdale apartment building

Renters at Kolumbia Garden are hoping to stop eviction notices

Surrey wants BNSF to slow Crescent trains

Mayor Linda Hepner said ‘it’s the least we can do’

VIDEO: Messages of hope, encouragement line bars of B.C. bridge

WARNING: This story contains references to suicide and may not be appropriate for all audiences.

Fresh-faced Flames fend off Canucks 4-1

Vancouver drops second straight NHL exhibition contest

VIDEO: B.C. deer struggles with life-preserver caught in antlers

Campbell River resident captures entangled deer on camera

Scheer pushes Trudeau to re-start Energy East pipeline talks

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer questioned the Prime Minister over Trans Mountain project

Mistaken identity: Missing dog claimed in Moose Jaw belongs to another family

Brennen Duncan was reunited with a white Kuvasz that was found in Saskatchewan

Abandoned kitten safe and sound thanks to B.C. homeless man

‘Jay’ found little black-and-white kitten in a carrier next to a dumpster by a Chilliwack pet store

Police chief defends controversial marijuana seizure

Advocates said cannabis was part of an opioid-substitution program in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside

Trans Mountain completes Burrard Inlet spill exercise

Training required, some work continues on pipeline expansion

Supporters of B.C. man accused of murdering Belgian tourist pack courtoom

Family and friends of Sean McKenzie, 27, filled the gallery for brief court appearance in Chilliwack

Most Read