Category Archives: HOCKEY

KC Ice Center offers many ways for players to grow hockey skills

KC Ice Center Camps

APRIL 2016 – Five years ago, Dean Nelson took a couple of KC Ice Center teams to the International Cup in Blaine, Minnesota, a Minneapolis suburb. The International Cup is a group of age-specific tournaments played at an eight-rink facility, with some top teams from all around the Midwest.

Nelson’s teams got smoked.

Last year, Nelson again took two teams to the International Cup. One team reached their age-group final. The other one went 1-1-2. That just shows how far hockey has come in Kansas City in the past five years, mostly under Nelson’s leadership.

March Skating Madness at the KC Ice Center

KC Ice Center Spring

MARCH 2016 – For those who don’t want to spend hours on end watching college basketball in March, the KC Ice Center has some good options for getting away from the television and getting the rush of cool air in your face.

“When March comes around, the team events and the other things that are part of the structure of the KC Ice Center slows down,” says Dean Nelson, general manager of the KCIC. “What we like to do in March is throw in extra stick times for kids, and extra public skates, for freestyle or open ice.

Kansas City Ice Center prepares traveling teams

hockey-travel

SEPTEMBER 2015 – Just because you are not good enough today, cut from your team, does not mean you won’t make it tomorrow. Michael Jordan played on his high school junior varsity basketball team as a sophomore.

That’s what Dean Nelson and his colleagues with the Kansas City Youth Hockey Association (KCYHA) remind youngsters who tried out—unsuccessfully—for traveling teams for this fall and winter. With the merger of the youth hockey organizations from around the metro area, the traveling teams have all been combined and there are fewer spots to fill.

Merger of youth hockey programs in KC showing benefits

Youth-Hockey-Merger

AUGUST 2015 – Nearly six months after the merger between the two largest youth hockey programs on opposite sides of the state line was announced, things are progressing nicely. The biggest effect so far happens early this month as the Kansas City Youth Hockey Association (KCYHA) will hold its first combined tryout for the traveling teams.

The KCYHA—the new name for the combined effort—will hold tryouts August 13-16 at the Kansas City Ice Center. The KCIC is the home of the Kansas City Stars youth program in Shawnee. The next week, the Independence Events Center, the home of the Missouri Mavericks ECHL team and the Junior Mavs youth program, will host the second round of tryouts.

Coaching or managing a team isn’t for everyone

Coaching

AUGUST 2015 – From age seven to 37, I played baseball under the guidance of dozens of coaches and managers.  From age 7 to 22, I played as an amateur, and then, after I signed my first pro contract with the Washington Senators in 1971, I played 16 years as a professional, including under Royals Hall of Fame manager Dick Howser. I would like to offer some personal views on the subject of coaching and/or managing.

The dangers for one sport athletes

one-sport-athletes

JULY 2015 – In today’s world of ultra-competitive children’s athletics, there is more and more pressure on parents and kids to begin specializing in one sport at a very young age.  While it may seem like choosing one sport and sticking with it will give an athlete an advantage, we are finding out more and more specialization does not necessarily lead to better performance.

In addition, it also puts these young athletes at much higher risk of injury. 

Future is bright for youth hockey at Kansas City Ice Center

KCIC-ice-skaters

JULY 2015– Four years ago, Dean Nelson came to Kansas City from Rochester, Minn., to be the assistant manager of the Kansas City Ice Center. From one hockey hotbed to another, right?

Not so much.

But in four years, Nelson has changed the way hockey is viewed, especially by the youth in the area, nearly doubling the number of kids involved in the game in Johnson County.

It may be Summer, but KC Ice Center is hosting clinics, camps

Podein-KCIC

JUNE 2015 – Beginning July 6, the KC Ice Center will be swarming with kids learning how to develop hockey skills. Every aspect of the game will be refined in the four-day clinics that have two hours of ice time with an hour of off-ice training.

KC Ice Center spring figure skating show set for May

KCIC-ice-show

MAY 2015 – If you have the ability to ride around on a 3/16-inch sharpened blade of steel on a sheet of ice, or if you like watching others who do, the Kansas City Ice Center has something for you in May.

The four-on-four hockey leagues that started at the beginning of April will run through the end of May. One of the tiers of an adult league in cooperation with the Independence Events Center will take up the first weekend of the month.

But the big event is the KC Ice Center Spring Figure Skating Show. In its third year, the program will have close to 100 skaters take part in an Oscar-themed event the middle weekend of May.

Wide-open success with 4-on-4 hockey at Kansas City Ice Center

APRIL 2015 – There are two ways to define success in the world of sports business: participation and wins. Or maybe it’s wins and participation.

Either way, the folks at the Kansas City Ice Center can call the switch last spring to a four-on-four competition a success. After years of running a spring season of regular five-on-five leagues, the KCIC switched to a four-on-four competition and it paid off.