As part of Third Assist's "Ultimate Pond Hockey Resource" we've reached out to the best pond hockey tournaments taking place this winter in the United States. We want to know where they're at, what makes them unique, and why we should visit this upcoming winter. Safe to say we're sold on the following tournaments.
Bing Pond Fest
Location of Tournament:
Chenango Valley State Park (New York)
Time of Year:
Multiple tournaments over multiple weekends-
January 12-13 is the Youth House Tournament
January 18-20 is the College Level Tournament
January 25-27 is the Adult Tournament
February 8-10 is the 10 and under Tournament
Size of the Tournament:
Each Tournament (weekend) features 250-300 active players
Varies by weekend and audience but in year's past there's been fireworks, animal interactions, local live music, sledding and more. Various vendors attend as well.
What Sets This Tournament Apart:
This is the only tournament with mechanical refrigeration in a state park setting. That means nearly-guaranteed ice in a beautiful part of the state. Also, proceeds from the tournament go to local DIFD programs for youth suicide prevention and youth mental health awareness.
Third Assist's Take:
Stable, eye-catching setting with multiple weekends to take part. It's one of a kind for the U.S.
Where to Learn More About This Tournament:
*All photos used by permission from tournament.
There's no way we don't share this movie on our site. Great movie showing the love of the game as it was originally played. It has connections with nearly every hockey player who watches it. Enjoy.
Every fall leading into winter this same question pops up a number of times. What's the easy answer?
- 4" of ice to skate, or do anything else on foot.
It is highly recommended you stay off the ice if it is 3" even though this will technically hold most bodyweights. So how do you test this?
- Pretty simple options include a drill, an ice auger, or a ice pick combined with a tape measure.
Finally, where is it best to test this?
Test this near the edge of the pond. Ice in the middle of the pond tends to be thicker because this is where the colder and often deeper water is located. Also it's not the smartest idea to hike your way out to the middle of the pond when you don't know the thickness of the ice to begin with.
And since we're talking about questionable smart actions, its great to have a rope and/or extension ladder nearby just in case. We've never had to use either, but there's plenty of YouTube videos showing people who wished they had one.
Stay safe and go play some pond.
The Pond Blog
Get outside and get playing. We'll give you some resources here to get started.