I wanted to reach out to you to give you a sense of what’s going on and solicit your feedback.
Like you, I am looking forward to the day when I can get my child back on the ice in our House League program. No matter what, if our House League program is allowed to start, it won’t start until October, which is usual for our league.
The real question is: what will that program look like?
The answer will be based on rules from Hockey Canada and the Greater Toronto Hockey League (our governing and accrediting organizations), the City of Toronto (which controls our rink), and of course, and most importantly, whatever Public Health rules are in place.
For the past few months, the ARHA volunteer executive has been monitoring information on different possible scenarios from various organizations and other leagues. Many external factors are still unknown to us, but one model in particular seems to be emerging around the city and province, and we wanted to share those ideas with you, and get your feedback.
If things continue to be stable with Stage 3 in Toronto, we may be able to organize our House League into cohorts of 18-20 kids each (based on age) and run on-ice programming for those cohorts. The most likely scenario we are seeing would be weekly 3-on-3 or 4-on-4 scrimmages within the cohort, until at least the December break – basically, the cohort would come to the rink (and only one cohort at a time), and get on the ice and play some fun pick-up-like hockey each week. In addition to scrimmages, we may also be able to offer some skills development programming for the younger cohorts. While this is not our typical model for House League, the main aspiration is to get kids back on the ice and having fun in a safe environment.
As I said, there are many external factors still to be determined – will Hockey Canada and the GTHL approve this kind of plan? Will the City of Toronto actually open our arena, let us use it, and allow for cohorts of 18-20 players plus guardians? And most importantly, will this kind of plan meet Public Health requirements and rules? We probably won’t know the answers to these questions until after schools open.
I have created a very short, anonymous survey (https://forms.gle/wHbGsVyA8bLvG7iq5). Your feedback will help us come up with the best experience we can provide during these difficult times.
Thank you in advance for sending in your feedback.
And please note that Select and GTHL A parents will be hearing separately from their managers.
Avi Hyman, General Manager (Volunteer), House League, Avenue Road Hockey Association
on behalf of Don Mintz, ARHA Director, and the entire ARHA volunteer executive