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.
Youth Pond Hockey Festival
Location of Tournament:
Purity Lake (across from King Pine Ski Area), Madison, NH
Time of Year:
Last weekend in January (January 26 - January 27, 2019)
Ages Welcomed to Play:
Youth (Boys: Mites through Peewees & Girls: U10 & U12)
Size of the Tournament:
Up to 70 teams of 6 to 8 USA registered players (4v4 on ice) are guaranteed 4 games.
Food for all and beer/wine tent for adults. Across the street you can find skiing & tubing.
Any Special Vendors?
Rugby imports sells gear. The Youth Pond Hockey Festival sells food, thermal mugs, etc.
What Sets This Tournament Apart:
The Youth Pond Hockey Festival (YPHF) is located on a private lake situated at Purity Spring Resort and King Pine Ski Area. The event is “old fashioned” pond hockey for more than 500 boys and girls (U12, U10, Pewee, Squirt and Mites). The 2019 YPHF will host more than 60 teams consisting of up to eight players primarily from New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island; however, teams out of New York State and Maine will attend this year’s festival. The games, 45 minute each, have four kids from each team playing on one of up to 14 rinks at any one time.
The lake is just 15 minutes south of Conway, NH, and “it provides an amazing opportunity for young hockey players to enjoy pond hockey at its best,” explains YPHF Co-Founder Tobin Kelly. He explains, “The collaboration with the resort and ski mountain allows for a winter festival feel by providing a wonderful family hockey experience in conjunction with other activities such as skiing, tubing, and dining for kids and parents alike.”
Proceeds from this event benefit The Laura Foundation. This New Hampshire based non-profit has a mission to provide funding to develop and support therapeutic recreation and educational programs that enrich the quality of lives of individuals with autism and/or seizure disorders. All programs are free to individuals receiving services through the Laura Foundation, and the YPHF helps to make this possible.
Third Assist's Take:
If we have one tournament on our list which we think you can bring the whole family to, it'd be this one. Some are built for adults, some are built solely for the kids (and parents idly watching), but the Youth Pond Hockey Festival has games for the younger guys and gals and entertainment for the siblings and adults. This is the only all-youth festival we know of in New England, and one of just a handful in the US. Good choice if you want to plan a winter weekend for the full family.