A familiar face has returned to helm Prince Rupert Minor Hockey (PRMHA).
Ron German, a past president of the PRMHA and current president and manager of the Rupert Rampage senior men’s hockey team has returned once again after former president Gene Storey stepped down recently.
“I’ve worked with Gene and Christine [Storey] for a number of years and Gene just wanted to take a rest this year so I stepped in,” said German on the weekend.
After the organization bought a $120,000 Zamboni to loan to the city this year, German has been able to make a smooth transition back into his old role.
“I’ve got to be careful on how I wear my hats [between the PRMHA and the Rampage] but we’ve got a good balance on the whole executive and especially with Gene (the now past president) and Christine (the treasurer), you’ve always got a good balance and good people to bounce ideas off of,” said German.
The president, who co-founded the Rampage, will have a busy winter ahead, but he says he wouldn’t be able to execute both jobs extremely well if the marriage between the senior men’s team and minor hockey wasn’t so strong.
“I just got back from the CIHL (Central Interior Hockey League) meetings in May and a lot of those guys aren’t, pardon the term, in bed with minor hockey and they have a hard time … I keep telling them ‘you guys need to be in partnership’. They need to be using them for their games … and just the knowledge of the people coming through the system in minor hockey, it’s huge.”
Both organizations, in coordination with the city’s recreation department have tackled a number of issues together, including working with limited ice time and serving food and drinks at the canteen.
“They do our gates, they do our 50/50 [draw], they do our programs, but I mean [the Rampage] has got great sponsorship … so we’re really lucky that way with our huge community support,” he said.
German is thankful the Zamboni issue is wrapped up for this coming season.
“We’re short on ice as it is and then when you add down time to it, it’s hard on the kids, especially the kids that want to be competitive, that’s their thing so you start not being able to provide it and they lose interest in [the sport] and you might not get them back either.”
Figure skating, and public skating also takes numerous blocks of ice time at the Jim Ciccone Civic Centre’s arena.
“We work hard and we have a lot of good volunteers who work hard to raise money for minor hockey and we want to ensure the kids have ice … Unfortunately the city doesn’t have the money to take care of stuff like that,” said German.
The PRMHA will be hosting the “Pursuit of Dreams” Lou Lemire Hockey Camp from Aug. 18 – 22. Information on the camp can be found at www.loulemirehockeycamp.com.