Cheers to this Vindy letter writer: 'Nothing beats skating outdoors'


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by Todd Franko (Contact)   | 340 entries


Nicholas DuBos had a perfectly timed letter in Sunday's paper. He longed for the days of outdoor skating at Mill Creek Park.

He dissected the demise of the rink and outlined an example of outdoor skating in Pittsburgh and some perspectives from other rink operators. It's a good letter. Check out the letter here.

There are plenty of things that get my attention. One of those things is hockey. And while there are many reasons for indoor facilities for hockey and skating, you can't miss a chance for outdoor hockey.

Think chocolate-Hershey, Pa.; golf-Augusta; movies-Hollywood.

For hockey nuts, outdoor hockey is on that level. More to the point: outdoor hockey on a frozen pond -- call it god's hockey.

Two neat guys from Austintown, Don Hall and Dave Rankin, gave a bunch of hockey kids I coach (via the Mahoning Valley Phantoms) a chance to experience god's hockey Saturday afternoon.

With perfect weather conditions and about 8 inches (OK - maybe 6) of ice underneath us, three straight hours of hockey filled Saturday afternoon.

We were joined by Chris Richards from the Youngstown Steelhounds. We made the game Coach's Crushers vs. Richards' Rockers.

(For the sake of Chris' job -- and since the Steelhounds got trounced Saturday night -- Chris only played about 20 minutes with us -- merely a morning stretch. We by no means felt guilty that their beating Saturday night was caused by Chris' visit with us. They did win Sunday.)

I don't want to announce that Richards had two losses on the day --- but the Crushers were pretty happy. (Truth is, we didn't keep score. Maybe the kids did.)

We have good hockey options locally with the Phantoms and the Steelhounds. Experiencing hockey the way it began is a win for any hockey kid.

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