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Event aims to promote participation in women’s hockey

Next weekend the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) in conjunction with the Ontario Women’s Hockey Association (OWHA) is hosting the second annual World Female Hockey Day at RIM Park in Waterloo.

The day will also be a fundraiser for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation to help build awareness and support towards a cure for the disease.

The IIHF World Female Hockey Day Marathon and fundraiser has two objectives, build awareness for female hockey in the community and raise funds to help find a cure for breast cancer.

“It is an opportunity for girls of every age to try and experience ice hockey at all levels,” said Robert Hennig, president of the Waterloo Girls Minor Hockey Association.

The hockey marathon starts at 7 a.m. and run to 10 p.m. as local girl’s house leagues and rep hockey teams play a series of games called “Play for Pink.”

Canadian Olympians and gold medalists Cheryl Pounder and Becky Keller of Team Canada will be hosting learn to play hockey starting at 10 a.m. and will be followed at noon with a Provincial Women’s Hockey League game between the K-W Rangers and the Whitby Jr. Wolves.

“The skate with the Olympians is really designed for young players to come out and skate with them and learn to play and see how fun it is,” said Hennig. “Female hockey is one of the fastest growing sports in the world.”

The day will be filled with great hockey games as the Toronto Varsity Blues take on the Waterloo Warriors at Pillar Arena which will be followed by a Canadian Women’s Hockey League game as Brampton faces the Toronto Furies at 5 p.m.

The fundraiser portion of the event will be through the Iced Pink Program. Every dollar raised through the Hockey Marathon event will be donated to breast cancer. Donation activities will be setup throughout the day and all revenue and fundraising generated by the event will be donated.

Organizers are expecting more than 800 on-ice participants and some 1,200 spectators.

Last year’s event was held at the Kitchener Auditorium and was a huge success.

“Because of how well we did last year we decided to expand it this year as there is some real opportunity here to promote female hockey and we wanted to make it bigger and better this year.”

There is no cost to attend the event, but donations would be appreciated.


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