Updated 01/16/2012 06:38 PM
Thousand Islands promoting ice sports in community
It's not a secret, the North Country gets cold in the winter. And because of it, more and more children are keeping warm by staying inside and watching TV or turning on the computer. But one community is going the extra mile to let them know they should be embracing the weather, especially with a pair of skates on. Our Brian Dwyer takes us to a day on the ice.
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CLAYTON, N.Y. -- By the time they dropped the puck, the hardest parts of putting together a first year event was over. The Thousand Islands Community, Clayton Figure Skating Club and Thousand Islands Youth Hockey Association teaming up to present Day on Ice 2012.
"The idea is to showcase what we do on the ice for activities for our youth," Thousand Islands Hockey Coach Joe Eppolito said. "In the winter time when it's cold, there are actually are things to do other than sit in front of the TV."
The day featuring a celebrity hockey game, figure skating exhibition and even a skills challenge. The Thousand Islands area trying to reinvigorate the community which has always placed a high priority on winter sports, but has seen a decline in recent years.
"We're just trying to show everybody it's not as expensive to do," Clayton Figure Skating Club President Juliann Schindler said. "It's a lot of fun and it's great for your kids. It promotes teamwork. It promotes self esteem and confidence."
And helping make the push are some people who really know how important that sheet of ice can be. The Syracuse Crunch sending not only some on-ice talent, but also offering special promotions for those who take part.
"We feel the North Country is a big strong fan base of ours," Mike Folsom, the Syracuse Crunch Senior Director of Promotional Development said. "We get people to drive down to our games all the time. Me coming up here today, hopefully is just showing our extension into the North Country as well."
But this event is about much more than just the sports. It's about the community. So folks who come here to watch the events, they're asked to bring a food item or even a jacket to help out those in need.
"It's an opportunity for the hockey and figure skating and ice related sports to give back to the community in a different way," Eppolito said.
And organizers say in future years they know the ability to help will grow as fast as the event itself.
YNN also provided some of that on-ice talent with our very own Katie Gibas, Bill Mich and Corey Pomeroy lacing up their skates.