After a friendly game against the Grey-Bruce Falcons on Saturday morning, the local special hockey team gathered for their Christmas party where Santa Claus himself delivered personalized jackets to each team member.
Team founder Julie Jamieson says the jackets are a big deal to the players and coaching staff.
“Really, having the jerseys was step one, just being able to be part of a team and belong and play hockey like their friends and siblings probably do. Now, they have the jackets that they can wear around town and when we go away,” she said, adding they will get to wear their jackets on the road soon. “We have some tournaments coming, and they will be in their jackets when we go. I think anyone would be excited – they look really sharp. They are majority navy blue with some yellow. The logo is on the front, with the big logo on the back, and they have their name and number embroidered on it. Then of course, we put number 37, Dan Snyder’s number, on there as well.”
This is the first year the Sun Rays have worked with the Dan Snyder Memorial Foundation and Jamieson says it couldn’t be a better fit.
“They have agreed wholeheartedly to support us. Lu Ann [Snyder] says this is something that would have meant an awful lot to Dan and he was very much community minded, particularly with people who are special needs.”
Jake Snyder, Dan’s brother, was on hand at the team Christmas party with his family, and even got a chance to watch the game against Grey-Bruce.“I think it was fantastic. It was my first chance to watch one of their games and talking to the coach, a lot of the athletes have come a long way from when they started recently,” he said. “You can just see how well some of them are going out there on the ice. They are just playing the game that we all do. It was great to see them having so much fun.”
He says there is plenty of room to grow the relationship between the foundation and the Sun Rays.
“The hockey connection is there,” he said. “We are certainly a hockey family and seeing that the Sun Rays have just gotten going, it always feels good to be able to support these kinds of organizations. We have been involved with the Thrashers sledge hockey team as well, Woolwich Minor Hockey, the Sugar Kings and it is just another local sports organization that we have a connection to.”
For more information on the Dan Snyder Memorial Foundation, visit their website at www.37risingstars.com. To volunteer or join the Sun Rays, email email@example.com.