Predators announce registration for free learn-to-play program

From the Nashville Predators:

REGISTRATION FOR JUNE SESSION OF PREDATORS G.O.A.L! PROGRAM SET FOR THIS TUESDAY, MAY 19 AT 9:00 AM

Nashville, Tenn. (May 15, 2009) - The Nashville Predators' Get out and Learn! (G.O.A.L!) program, presented by Delta Dental of Tennessee, will be begin taking applicants for its June session on Tuesday, May 19 at 9:00 a.m. Registration can be accessed through nashvillepredators.com/goal. The next session will be held Wednesdays from 5:15-6:30 p.m. on June 3, 10, 17 and 24 @ A-Game Sportsplex, 215 Gothic Court, Franklin. Space is limited.

G.O.A.L! is a free on-ice youth hockey program hosted by the Predators in association with local ice rinks. Designed for boys and girls (ages 4-9) with no prior skating or hockey experience, the four-week program will introduce the sport of ice hockey to kids while teaching the life experiences of teamwork, sportsmanship and self-confidence through athletic participation. Since October 2006, more than 725 families have graduated from G.O.A.L!

Full hockey equipment, including skate rental, is provided free of charge. Once the four-week session is complete, there are hockey programs available at both Centennial Sportsplex and A-Game Sportsplex in Franklin for continued development.

The Nashville Predators are dedicated to supporting the development of youth hockey at all levels and recognize the need for local skating facilities to be accessible for beginners to help to grow the sport. For more information, visit nashvillepredators.com/goal.

For any of you with small kids who might be interested, this is a WONDERFUL program that allows them to try on the pads and get on the ice to check out the great game of hockey. All the gear you need is provided for the duration of the program, and there is no charge.

Last summer, all 3 of my kids participated, and one of them has decided to keep playing; this program is ideal, because you don't have to worry about buying a bunch of equipment before knowing whether it's worth the investment. Of course, I was busier than the proverbial one-armed paper hanger trying to get all three dressed at the same time in a crowded locker room, but it was a blast.

Just take a look at a short clip I caught from last year's session, when the assembled mass of kids were unleashed on an end-to-end rush:

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