We all have to chip in

The Compass - - SPORTS - — Ni­cholas Mercer is a reporter/pho­tog­ra­pher for The Com­pass. He can be reached by email at the fol­low­ing: nmercer@cb­n­com­pass.ca

As I am sure ev­ery­one is aware, the hol­i­days are just around the cor­ner.

In some cor­ners of the Trin­i­tyCon­cep­tion- Pla­cen­tia re­gion, it wouldn’t sur­prise me to learn that the Christ­mas sea­son is al­ready in full swing.

Un­doubt­edly, there will be many a young lad or lass tear­ing into their presents on Christ­mas morn­ing with the hopes of un­wrap­ping a new piece of hockey equip­ment.

Whether it will be a new hel­met, pair of gloves, skates or a new stick, there will be a new piece to show off come the next prac­tice.

Johnny or Julie will en­thu­si­as­ti­cally call their friends gush­ing over their new piece of hard­ware.

They’ll use it around the house more times than they can count in an at­tempt to get used to their new gear.

But, what hap­pens to the equip­ment that is for­got­ten and un­wanted.

Oh, it’ll prob­a­bly end up in some dank, dark cor­ner of the base­ment or the closet. There it will gather dust, only to be joined by other pieces of old, un­wanted equip­ment the fol­low­ing Christ­mas and the Christ­mas af­ter that.

Of course, it’s not lim­ited to the hol­i­days. It’ll hap­pen on birth­days, East­ers and prior to the new hockey sea­son as well.

Mean­while, Billy down the street has no hockey equip­ment to open on Christ­mas morn­ing.

It’s not be­cause he doesn’t love hockey, be­cause be­lieve me he does. Billy’s favourite team is the Toronto Maple Leafs. He watches ev­ery game, hang­ing on each word spo­ken by Hockey Night in Canada’s Don Cherry.

Billy knows the stats of ev­ery player and his favourite player is Dion Pha­neuf.

He’d love the op­por­tu­nity to lace his skates up and dash down the wing like many of his hockey he­roes.

If Billy loves the game so much, why doesn’t he play it?

It’s sim­ple, re­ally. His par­ents can’t af­ford to pay both the reg­is­tra­tion and buy the equip­ment nec­es­sary.

They could pick it up sec­ond hand, but then it will still cost a small for­tune to out­fit Billy prop­erly.

That’s not a knock against his par­ents, it’s just hockey is as an ex­pen­sive sport. Not ev­ery­one can af­ford to play it.

Surely, you all know that though. Ev­ery year, we are in­un­dated with the vis­age of chil­dren who look long­ingly at a per­fect sheet of ice, hop­ing to play some­day.

Cana­dian Tire will show us com­mer­cials of its Jump Start pro­gram.

But, there’s more to be done and here’s where the used equip­ment comes in.

Each mi­nor hockey as­so­ci­a­tion has a mi­nor hockey room where it keeps a small se­lec­tion of used equip­ment.

This gear is avail­able to any player should they need it. It could be a full set of goalie gear, doesn’t mat­ter, it’s there for the player’s dis­posal.

How­ever, why does the col­lec­tion have to be small?

Why can’t we all pitch in and make sure that used equip­ment gets to the sta­dium? You don’t need it any­more. In­stead of try­ing to make a quick buck, make sure a needy fam­ily does not have to spend all of theirs to give their child a chance to play.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.