Dean Francks of NOYFSS, left, and Becky Holmes of KidSport go for a loose ball in front of the Village Green Hotel’s Peter Kaz in preparation for the big street hockey tournament July 28. (Kevin Mitchell/Morning Star)

Vernon hosting Game On tourney at Village Green Hotel

Inaugural street hockey tournament faces off July 28

Peter Kaz is going with the slogan ‘Game On, Vernon’ for the inaugural Village Green Hotel 3-on-3 Street Hockey Tournament for charity.

The local KidSport chapter and North Okanagan Youth Family Services Society (NOYFSS) will net proceeds from the Saturday, July 28 event which will feature some area NHL personalities.

“We’re going to have a bunch of nets set up in our parking lot,” said Kaz, who runs special services at the Green. “We have room for six games. The tournament is for age groups 9-11, 12-15 and then 16+ (co-ed teams or all male or female teams are invited to be in the same open group). We can accept eight-year-olds in the 9-11 division with parents’ approval. There will be an outdoor family festival so this will be one of the most memorable events of the summer.”

Plans include a Bavarian garden and family barbecue area in the parking lot.

“There will be NHL Players participating or simply there to meet you and sign some autographs,” said Kaz. “There will be a deejay blanketing the day with some great music.”

Kaz hopes to attract teams from Kelowna, where the annual ‘PlayOn’ tournament ran for several years near Prospera Centre but is no longer operating.

Dean Francks with NOYFSS is lining up some former NHLers and hopes to field a team in the open category. He’s stoked about the fundraiser.

“This will help big time with the construction of our child-friendly courtyard; this will see that project through,” said Francks.

“Prizes will be handed out all day for fun and incredible plays and those just having fun,” added Kaz.

There is a trophy up for grabs for the top adult team. Medals will be awarded to the winners of the minor teams.

Becky Holmes of KidSport is also excited about the tournament which carries major sponsorship from 105.7 Sun FM. Her group will be holding 50-50 draws.

The Green Pub will hold a pre-tourney event on the Friday night with contests and door prizes for those over 19. Vernon’s own Young’uns will perform both Friday and Saturday nights with a special deejay working in between sets.

Teams must include three players and a goaltender with a maximum of eight rostered players.

Registration is $250 and the deadline is July 20. All games will include officials with referee experience in local or provincial leagues. Each team will play a minimum of three games and all teams will get at least one additional playoff game.

Teams will start the first half attacking towards their bench’s half of the surface. The ball will change possession after every goal. The scoring team must clear the centre line until any of the defensive team’s players passes centre. On-the-fly line changes are permitted.

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