On the eve of Washington Capitals training camp, which is set to begin in just 10 days on September 17th (rookie camp begins on Sunday the 11th), the Caps announced that they have donated $25,000 to Potomac Valley Amateur Hockey while superstar Alexander Ovechkin and equipment maker Bauer have donated 108 sets of equipment locally and abroad to support the develoment of youth hockey. Capitals owner Ted Leonsis helped form Washington Capitals Charities back in 2000 and the team has been using that organization to help grow the greatest sport on ice and help the disadvantaged ever since. One of the beneficiaries in the Baltimore area of this latest effort will be the Harford North Stars hockey program.
Be sure to stay tuned here at WNST.NET as hockey coverage will ramp up with the commencement of Capitals training camp.
The full Caps Press Release on the donations is provided below.
ARLINGTON, Va. – The Capitals have donated $25,000 to the Potomac Valley Amateur Hockey Association (PVAHA) to help grow the sport of hockey, the Washington Capitals announced at a press event today. In addition, Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin and Bauer Hockey have donated 108 full sets of youth hockey equipment to Kettler Capitals Iceplex and PVAHA.
Washington Capitals Charities has donated $25,000 to PVAHA as part of the John Crerar Development Grant. This marks the third year in a row that the Capitals have donated to the USA Hockey affiliate for programs such as diversity hockey, disabled hockey, cross-ice hockey, Grow the Game programs and the American Development Model. Last year the money was distributed to 15 area hockey programs to increase participation and promote ice hockey within Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. Thanks in part to Washington Capitals Charities grants, PVAHA had 1,298 new players during the 2010-11 season, an increase of 26.8% from the season before. To date Washington Capitals Charities has donated $70,000 to PVAHA.
The John Crerar Hockey Development Grant is funded in part by donations from the Washington Capitals through the Washington Capitals Charities. Created in 2000, Washington Capitals Charities offers unique resources and Caps Care programs to other charities and organizations on behalf of the Capitals. Its mission is to create, maintain and support community programs in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area that encourage participation in hockey, serve to educate youth, assist those who are less fortunate and focus on health and wellness.
The purpose of the John Crerar Hockey Development Grant Program is to assist the member associations within PVAHA to increase participation and promote hockey development within Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia.
Ovechkin, along with Bauer Hockey CEO Kevin Davis, made the announcement at a special ceremony at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Tuesday, Sept. 6. Approximately 70 kids from clubs in D.C., Maryland and Virginia were joined by PVAHA president John Coleman and affiliate youth hockey growth coordinator Deb Moon at the event. Capitals majority owner and chairman Ted Leonsis as well as vice president and general manager George McPhee were also in attendance.
Each set of equipment includes elbow, shoulder and shin pads, hockey pants, skates, gloves and sticks with 30 sets of equipment to be donated to Kettler Capitals Iceplex which will use the gear to create a Learn to Play hockey program for underserved children in the Arlington community. The remaining 78 sets of equipment will be distributed by PVAHA to help grow the sport. The Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club, Hampton Roads Whalers, Harford North Stars, Bowie Hockey Club, Navy Youth Hockey Association, Metro Maple Leafs and Southern Maryland Sabres Hockey Club will all receive donated equipment. Later this month, 108 additional sets of hockey equipment will be donated to the Dynamo youth hockey program in Moscow, Russia.