One year ago today, June 13 2010, I decided to take the plunge. I filled out and submitted paperwork to the great state of Washington to become a non-profit corporation. It was not an easy decision that took me quite some time in both thinking and research along with asking questions on not just on how a non-profit operates but also if this was the right thing to do at this moment in time for Everett Youth Hockey. The conclusion I came to is now obvious but the two confirmations that were incredibly huge in my decision were conversations I had with Joe Doyle, USA Hockey Director of the ADM for our district and Everett Youth Hockey Director Christopher Raub. The Everett Youth Hockey Booster Club was born!
Since then EYHBC has operated as a non-profit corporation under the guidance of it's Board of Trustees which has included Mike Nouque, Garret Powers, Tim Thomas, Renny Huot, Ray Styrk, Susan Scott, Summer Myers, John Nield, Tony Palagyi, Sean O'Brien and Heather Greer. Everybody has done their part but some of these people have put in incredible amounts of time and effort. I want to give great thanks everyone mentioned along with all the others not mentioned that have volunteered their time and effort. It takes many people for an endeavor such as this to see success. Thank you!
Starting out is not an easy thing, especially when you are starting with nothing! We have had many generous donations and sponsors not to mention all you folks who joined as inaugural members of EYHBC. You may not realize it but as members your place in EYHBC history is shown by your membership number, the lower the number on your membership card, the earlier you joined. That number is yours forever!
Over the past year the Booster Club has been able to champion a few ideas to help enhance the experience for the players and their families. Things like practice jerseys, the player program and the Scholar Athlete of the Month. In addition to those we helped the Everett Silvertips Booster Club sell more calendars and The Everett Herald to sell more newspaper subscriptions than either one of those organizations ever have during Silvertip games in any previous season. Special thanks to Annette Jackson for heading up the calendar effort and Ray Styrk for The Herald and all the volunteers that were involved in making these a great success as the proceeds from these efforts are available for EYH use. Another program we were able to develop is the Skate Out with the Silvertips where a player is introduced with the Everett Silvertips starting line up before weekend home games. This is open to anyone, not just EYH players as there are Silvertip fans around our area that play for other associations. Last season we had players skate out from SJHA and Kent Valley! Look for details on this program for the 2011/12 season soon after the Tips schedule is released this summer. One more item we think is a big deal is the Turcotte Stickhandling Hockey School will now be having a summer camp in Everett. This school is all over the United States and Canada and is recognized as one of the finest training tools in clinic form that is available. We are thrilled they are now in Everett. A special thanks goes to Katrina McArthur, Comcast Community Ice Rink manager and Hockey Mom, for coordinating the rink times and locking this down.
Our ultimate goal is to help the EYH program and it's families. We were able to do a little of that in the form of equipment in the past year. EYHBC obtained an infra red timing system courtesy of a generous donation by Lynnwood Motoplex to get accurate times during skills testing, 125 four ounce pucks to be utilized for the Mite division and their development based on USA Hockey's American Development Model. Two Ultimate Goalies were purchased to replace the tattered shooter tutors that have been in use since the program began, also 200 practice pucks for the teams were brought in as well. A couple recent purchases for EYH and it's coaches to use are checking bags and puck handling rings. These checking bags will help players to check and administer body contact without as much worry to injury during practices, the rings were introduced by USA Hockey's Joe Doyle to train both players on defense and offense in the art of puck protection and in taking pucks away from an opponent.
A few of our sponsors and donors that helped give us the ability to accomplish the above mentioned items during our infancy are Lynwood Motoplex, Play It Again Sports Marysville, Comcast Community Ice Rink, The Hat Trick Pizzeria, The Everett Silvertips, The Powers family, The Knutzen family, The Palagyi family and so many others including every member as they supported via purchasing memberships. Thank you for your generosity.
Our largest and most significant event for the year in terms of fund raising was our 1st annual dinner and auction which was held in the Edward D. Hansen Conference Center right here in our very own Comcast Arena. It is a tremendous amount of work on so many people's part but turned out to be what I consider a great success for our very first event. We had Joe Doyle from USA Hockey come in and be our guest speaker, had a lot of different items for auction and some pretty good food as well. A special treat was the fact there was a Silvertip player at every table in attendance as guests of EYHBC. The dinner auction grossed over $27,000 and we are hopeful to build off that in the coming years. Since we were able to have Joe Doyle here as our guest, we also coordinated an ADM clinic the next day for any Mite aged players in the area. We had kids and coaches taking part from SJHA, SnoKing, Whatcom and Kent. Hey, has anyone else noticed this Joe Doyle cat is very prominent in our first year?
Okay folks, this has rambled on long enough. The short of it is The Everett Youth Hockey Booster Club has had an extremely successful launch year and with everything we have planned in the near future; with you, your families and friends help……..will continue to grow.
Thank you everyone and keep a look out in the very near term for an exciting news from your Everett Youth Hockey Booster Club.
-Gary Gusinsky, Director