Announcing the Backyard Hockey Equipment Drive

Every so often, I share with you a person, a charity, or a company that I believe in, urging you to patronize them or consider them when making donations. I do this because I feel strongly that the hockey community, and society as a whole, has something to gain from these entities. That said, I realize that everyone is busy, and that we can’t all save the world all the time. But that’s what makes what I’m about to tell you so awesome.

But wait. Before we go any further, I’ll ask that you read (or re-read) our article on Restore Hockey, a Massachusetts-based company that’s helping make the game of hockey available to kids who otherwise might not have a chance to experience it. That article is here.

Back? Great.

“That’s wonderful,” you’re thinking. “It’s great that there is a company out there collecting used gear, sanitizing it, and doling it out to kids who can use it. But I have twelve kids of my own, I work 80 hours a week, I don’t live anywhere near any of their equipment drop-off spots, and I haven’t even found time to throw away the scraps of wrapping paper that are still embedded in the living room carpet.”

I know, and I understand. But keep reading. We’re going to make your participation in this as easy as possible.

That’s because is teaming up with Backyard Ice to bring you the Backyard Hockey Equipment Drive. Doesn’t sound easy, you say? How’s this: you won’t even have to leave your house to participate.

Here’s what we’re talking about — and look, I even numbered the steps for you:

1 – Go to Backyard Ice’s website by clicking this link and sign up to be a participant in the equipment drive.

2 – Sometime during the month of January, plan a skating party, a game of shinny, or anything that’ll get like-minded folks to your house. Hold a Mike Ricci look-alike contest if you’re so inclined.

3 – When you invite your friends and family, ask them to bring at least one piece of equipment to donate to Restore Hockey. Skates, gloves, protective gear, even broken one-piece sticks can be reconditioned for use by the Restore Team.

4 – Sit around and wait for us to come get the gear!

And that’s it! By registering on the Backyard Ice website, we’ll know which of you are helping out with this initiative and either myself or Alex from Backyard Ice will be in touch regarding the pick up. We’ll come to you, collect the gear your friends and family left with you, and make sure it gets to Restore Hockey.

What’s in it for you? Well, not only do you gain the satisfaction of knowing that your donated equipment is being sanitized and plugged right back into the hockey community, but by registering with Backyard Ice and coordinating an equipment pickup with us, you’ll be entered into a drawing to win any number of prizes. The prize list is growing, and you’ll have to sign up at Backyard Ice for a sneak peek. Prize winners will be randomly selected once the equipment pickups are complete in early February.

If you have a backyard rink and live in the New England area, please consider being a part of the inaugural Backyard Hockey Equipment Drive. You’re going to have folks over to skate anyways, aren’t you? Why not sign up here, collect some used gear, do some good for the hockey community, and possibly even win some prizes.

We may not save the world. But if our collective efforts lead to just one child getting the chance to play the game we all know and love, then they’ll be pretty psyched you saved those old Microns.

Unfortunately, we’re only equipped to run this equipment drive in the New England area. If you’re from outside New England but would like to contribute, please contact Restore Hockey directly.

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