WEST CARLETON – With summer slowly retreating, the West Carleton Minor Hockey Association (WCMHA) is ready to bring back hockey.
“Welcome Back West Carleton hockey families,” the WCMHA released in a statement yesterday (Aug. 30). “Yes that is right, registration is officially open for Phase 1 and it is our hope that the information provided below will help you make an informed decision in order for you to determine what the best fit is for your child and your family during these non-traditional hockey times. As such, if you feel that some of the information is vague, it is due to the direction and guidelines from Hockey Eastern Ontario ever changing. Please take this ride with us as we allow ourselves the flexibility to adjust on the fly and ensure we are putting together a safe and fun program for your child this year.”
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has had a huge affect on all forms of hockey for this upcoming season.
“With that being said, we all recognize this upcoming season will look different, as we are required to follow the guidelines of the province, municipality, Hockey Canada, and Hockey Eastern Ontario (HEO),” the WCMHA said. “We have also been in collaboration with other local hockey associations within our District (D4) and have a plan in place that will allow players to get back on the ice and once again playing the game they love. In implementing this return to ice plan, all public health guidelines will be followed, and the health and safety of all members will be our top priority.”
Due to the changes of the upcoming hockey season, the WCMHA wanted to ensure there was enough interest to organize a program this winter. The association required interested parents to pay a non-refundable $25 “intent” pre-registration fee.
“So, thank you to the families who registered their child’s intent to play hockey this season,” the WCMHA said. “The $25 “intent” pre-registration was an integral part of our process in order to assist us in developing our final hockey framework for our Phase 1 (October – December 2020) season. For anyone who did not pre-register, you can still officially register your child for Phase 1.”
As outlined in the WCMHA frequently asked questions section (http://wcmha.ca/files/2020-08-06_wcmha_-_registration_faq.pdf) during the pre-registration process, the ongoing restrictions related to COVID-19 have altered how traditional hockey will be played “as we will not be permitted to have league game play,” the WCMHA said.
As a result, WCMHA will focus primarily on skill development until the province, City of Ottawa and Hockey Canada/HEO permit a return to normal hockey activities.
To facilitate a return to the ice, the season will be divided into two phases. Phase 1, which will be referred to as the Development Phase will run from mid-September to December for Crusaders and from October to December for house league.
“This phase will focus entirely on player development, utilizing a combination of skill/drill based sessions and/or scrimmage play,” the WCMHA said. “For the older age groups they will focus will primarily be on scrimmage play.”
Phase 2, will run from January to March/April and will either be a continuation of the development format of Phase 1, or will convert to normal hockey programming if permitted under provincial, municipal and Hockey Canada regulations.
“Information regarding any Phase 2 activities will be communicated further into the fall and a separate registration process and fee structure will be implemented at that time,” the WCMHA said.
Crusader/house registration and fees
Official registration is now open and will close on Sept. 10, at 11:59 p.m. for Crusaders and September 15 at 11:59 p.m. for house league in order to finalize roster bubbles and get the season started. Please go to the following link to choose your package for your child’s return to the ice https://registration.hockeycanada.ca/registration/?ID=1571 .
“When registering in the portal you now have the option of paying by credit card (with a small administration fee) or you can use the eTransfer option by selecting ‘Other’ and send your fee with the invoice number and player name in the comments section to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Please note your child will not be permitted on the ice until they have at minimum paid the first installment,” the WCMHA said.