Call it an ice gesture.
New York Islander legend Pat LaFontaine surprised hockey-loving tweens with high-end gear at the Madison Square Boys and Girls Club in Flatbush on March 29. More than 100 burgeoning athletes got the new sticks and skates to help sharpen their skills and spark the next generation of Brooklyn hockey greats. It was a heart-warming event that brought some heat to the chilly sport, said LaFontaine.
“I remember the first pair of skates I ever got, and to see these kids have that same opportunity is really special,” said LaFontaine. “I couldn’t be more excited for the kids at Madison to receive this donation from CCM.”
LaFontaine, CCM Hockey, and Brooklyn Sports and Entertainment donated more than $30,000 worth of gear to the Madison Square Boys and Girls Club, which connects youth with activities their families typically can’t afford.
Kids will enjoy the gear as part of the Islanders’ Sticks and Skates program, which offers free ice skating and hockey clinics for all ages. The program also gives tykes a chance to glide around the rink free of charge each Monday from 4–5:30 pm at the Lakeside Ice Skating Rink in Prospect Park.
It’s a great opportunity for kids to learn their way around the rink, and the sports gear is a sorely needed addition that will help junior hockey-fans enjoy the sport first-hand, said one pint-sized player.
“The equipment will help us because you can’t play hockey without sticks and skates,” said 12-year-old club member Amanda. “My sister also wants to learn how to play ice hockey, and I know having this equipment will help her learn.”