So I haven't added an updated for awhile and that is because the team has been working on the logistics of the refrigeration for our outdoor project. Here are some pictures of what we accomplished today in starting the actual build of the site, enjoy...
Today I have MEGA-NEWS involving local youth hockey:
UHS has agreed to sponsor our youth weekend and offset half the registration fee for local STHA house and Blizzard youth teams.
SO REMIND PLAYERS TO KEEP THIS WEEKEND OPEN!
This sponsorship will help allow local players the opportunity to participate in the event and have a really unique experience in the process that is not typical for these kind of teams.
UHS will also have members of their Sports Medicine team at all three weekends of the event to answer questions and help out.
I cannot thank UHS and specifically Rick Boland enough for working with me on this request to help local kids in the area.
I will be working with the Southern Tier Hockey Association (STHA) and Binghamton Blizzard to oversee the logistics of this for the kids, but this is a seriously great thing for grassroots youth hockey in the area!!
BIG ANNOUNCEMENT, WE ARE STEPPING UP OUR GAME!
The first two years of BPF have been great and the support wonderful, but the erratic weather left me wanting to do something, anything to try to ensure hockey players were actually able to play their games. So after literally months of work and meetings I was given the okay to share some really great news:
We have been able to secure funding for capital items to annually setup a 200' x 110' sand based mechanically refrigerated slab of ice in State Park for three weekends of events, making the ice extremely reliable for everyone involved. We hope to have that funding in place and available for use for the 2018 events.
This will NOT be a full rink with boards and glass, and the way we will do it will maintain the ambiance of outdoor hockey. It will be situated in a wooded area of the park and be broken up into four 95' x 50' game areas that will be contained on most sides by the same short pond hockey boards we used last year down on the lake.
We will be required to fund/pay for many pricey, annual rental items to support this setup (including the actual refrigeration skid), and that is part of why this event is shifting into a three weekends. We are taking a big step here after seeing how much fun people are having at the event and how many people it brings to the area. Any help people can lend to promoting the weekends/expansion will be greatly appreciated.
I cannot say thank you enough to the people that supported this wild idea that I had a few years ago, the ones that are helping now, and the hundreds of players that chose to play their hockey in the Binghamton area.
Thanks for your patience.
There are a few more forthcoming announcements regarding 2018, but at this time I feel it is alright to announce the dates for the events, and yes there are multiple events:
January 12-14 You Can Play Weekend
January 19-21 Youth Hockey Weekend
January 26-28 Adult Hockey Weekend
The adult weekend will follow the same script as the past two years, but with a new protection against mother nature (details to come at a later point).
The specifics for both the Youth Weekend and the You can Play Weekend are being worked out, but it is worthwhile to let people know that we are opening up this experience to people of more ages and ability levels.
Keep an eye out for more announcements regarding what's happening.
Thanks for the support!
Let's get this out of the way right now: 2018 WILL HAVE AN EVENT.
This entire spring and summer has been a battle of logistics to find a way to make this event the best it can be by making every possible effort to ensure an ice surface for our participants. Nothing of this magnitude happens easily, and I will not state/promise something unless I know that I can deliver it.
As of this moment, there are two plans for 2018: one involving natural refrigeration, and the second based on mechanical outdoor refrigeration. In an effort to provide the participants with the best chance of having a complete weekend, and no longer having mother nature be the X factor, my team and I have worked tirelessly on an expansion project.
Until I know the final status of that project and how it will affect the 2018 event I do not feel as though it is fair to announce dates or open registration. HOWEVER, that time looks to be approaching quickly, and I hope to have an announcement very soon.
Not only are they providing rooms for people traveling, they are putting something back into the event this year by helping to sponsor it.
We were a little late getting this together this year, but that's because some items we used last year are no longer available, and we were trying to add some more options for people and be a little more creative.
The webstore is open and in all honesty there is a limited quantity of all the items in the store. If you order online ahead of the event you are guaranteed to get whatever you order and it will be at State Park at the ZINK area available for pickup on Friday 2/10/17. If you wait we may not have something you want during the weekend.
As always, thanks for the support and we hope you like some of what we put out there!
Hat Trick Hockey is going to make the trek up from PA again this year, offering an on-site pro shop to the hockey guys.
Chris is a really good guy and will be bringing up basic supplies and offering skate sharpening services right at the park.
Bert Adams Disposal will be helping us out during the weekend with our cleanup needs and donating some stress balls for the players so they all keep on their best behavior.
Thanks to Wade Electronics for helping out this year.
People love a family company helping with a community event!
After last year's event it's ironic that he has the best insurance rates under the sun, but Mike Kolcun also has the hockey bug. He is helping us out this year with the event and will also be doing a raffle to give away two weekend passes to the Dick's Open which will include concert passes for the Bon Jovi concert!!
Look for his raffle location during the weekend.
We all know the Binghamton Rumble Ponies for their awesome fireworks shows, and now the Rumble Ponies are helping us out with our fireworks Friday 2/10/17!!
Don't forget on that Friday we will have skating under the lights, Animal Adventure, live music, s'mores for kids, a guided hike through the park during the lunar eclipse, and more that will all be capped off by a full fireworks show brought to you in part by the Binghamton Rumble Ponies.
On Friday, 2/3/17, we will be doing a player mixer 5-7pm at the Colonial for ALL player in the tournament.
Reasons you should go:
There's been a slight change of plans, and we will have the very talented Jared Campbell playing for a bit Saturday morning for kids and families at our event.
Jared has done some great work in the community and we are happy to have him as a part of the Binghamton Pond Festival!
Check the weekend schedule for updates..
Today we sold out again.
I cannot express just how thankful I am to everyone for their support!
It's going to be a damn good time!
Thank you everyone!
We closed out the high skill division today and it is now sold out. That means there is only ONE TEAM SPOT REMAINING and that is in the 40+ division.
39 of 40 team spots taken. As always, thank you guys!
We are now at 38 teams.
ONE spot available in the High Skill division and ONE spot available in the 40+ division.
Today's rain should freeze up over the weekend, and although next week's weather has pockets that are less than favorable (warm), we get a chill again next weekend so things may be playing out just right.
The extended forecast from AccuWeather looks PERFECT!
As of mid week we had 9-10" of ice which is outstanding.
Hotel accomidations at the Double Tree are now available.
I also want to thank the Double Tree for offering sponsorship support to help bring you guys music during the weekend!
Rec and competitive divisions just sold out tonight.
37 of 40 teams spots filled, the remaining spots are:
ONE for the high skill division
Two for the 40+ division
The 21+ competitive division is now sold out due to how the schduling must be done.
There are four tournament spots left available:
ONE in the high skill level division
TWO in the 40+ division
ONE in the recreation division
If someone wants to get into the 21+ competitive division, please email me and I will put you on a waiting list.
Zink's team hoodie special is up and available again for all the teams. This is a great alternative to jerseys.
Eight single color screened hoodies with your team logo on the front and your name and number on the back for $200, just $25 per hoodie.
Or get 12 for $275 and have some extra for kids and family to wear while they cheer you on!
Additional color screens are available and cen be worked out by contacting Brett Groves at firstname.lastname@example.org
We are expanding our social media presence and you can help by following us on Instagram @bingpondfest and by using #bingpondfest to tag us in your pictures before, after and during the event!
Price Chopper took notice of what we are bringing to the community for our Friday Frozen Fun Night and they decided to help us bring Animal Adventure to you.
A very sincere thank you to the people of Price Chopper for giving back to the community and supporting something that any family can enjoy at our event.
Just need to give a shoutout to the B-Sens for their continued support of the event.
Minor Pro hockey is a long-standing stable of this area, so please continue supporting them!
Also, you can take advatage of their ticket specal for the DIFD Power to the Purple Night here:
Wanted to thank Brent Dyer Construction for stepping forward and sponsoring the stage this year where we have several great local bands playing over the weekend.
I know Brent personally, and he is that increasingly rare breed of businessman that has the knowledge and skill to do quality work but also sees things through and cares about his customers.