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Anyone play in Escondido?

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01-25-2013, 01:21 PM
  #1
stocky
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Anyone play in Escondido?

Hello all,
Just thought I would throw it out there. I am currently deployed, but I would like to play hockey this summer. I might be a bit busy so it might have to wait until the fall/winter season to start up. But even so, I thought I would ask around and see what was the general feeling on the quality of hockey there. It is the closest rink to Camp Pendleton, that I know of.

I have been to a pair of stick and puck sessions there and have skated at open skates probably 2 dozen times. I wouldnt call myself a great skater, but I am very comfortable on the ice, can crossover, both ways forwards and toward the right going backwards. I was getting better as stopping before I left too.

I have never played organized hockey, much less a pickup game on ice. Last time I played a game of street hockey was probably 10 years ago (though I was also skating and shooting around at a little sport court rink recently). How are the beginner classes offered there? Would it just be better to play at the lowest teir my first season?

Thanks for any and all replys!

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01-25-2013, 01:25 PM
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I have never played in a league there but have done the stick time and pickups on Saturday mornings. I know they have a lot of times/sessions and even break down pickup according to level on their website. So once you get situated, you'll have options.

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07-16-2013, 11:36 PM
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Been lurking The Rink for a few weeks because I've got the itch to get back out on the ice. I'm originally from Boston and have lived in SD for 2 years now. I'm intermediate at best and I wanted to check out the stick times at Escondido on Saturday mornings.

Is it pretty deserted or will there be 100 kids? If there are a lot of guys, is it a group of regulars that will take over with a shinny game?

I noticed "minimum" equipment requirements such as shins and elbow pads (helmets obviously, I'll be wearing one), do they check for that stuff? I don't have shins and elbows out here. I was at PIAS in Mira Mesa and almost pulled the trigger on a pair of shins, but was keeping the budget in mind.

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07-17-2013, 01:37 AM
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Stick time during the week in the later morning sessions are pretty chill -10-12 players but 1/3 of the sheet will be occupied by private coaches (sometimes). Not sure about Saturday mornings.

As for coaching, Mira Mesa does Intermediate drills/pick up on Tuesday nights. Some begginers and a few ringers but chill.

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07-17-2013, 01:45 AM
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Minimum requirements at Escondido, you should be fine. Get the basics on (helmet/gloves) and wear some baggy hammer pants and you're chill. Lol.

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07-17-2013, 10:38 AM
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Minimum requirements at Escondido, you should be fine. Get the basics on (helmet/gloves) and wear some baggy hammer pants and you're chill. Lol.
Good stuff. Appreciate it.

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07-17-2013, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by 304 View Post
Been lurking The Rink for a few weeks because I've got the itch to get back out on the ice. I'm originally from Boston and have lived in SD for 2 years now. I'm intermediate at best and I wanted to check out the stick times at Escondido on Saturday mornings.

Is it pretty deserted or will there be 100 kids? If there are a lot of guys, is it a group of regulars that will take over with a shinny game?

I noticed "minimum" equipment requirements such as shins and elbow pads (helmets obviously, I'll be wearing one), do they check for that stuff? I don't have shins and elbows out here. I was at PIAS in Mira Mesa and almost pulled the trigger on a pair of shins, but was keeping the budget in mind.
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Stick time during the week in the later morning sessions are pretty chill -10-12 players but 1/3 of the sheet will be occupied by private coaches (sometimes). Not sure about Saturday mornings.

As for coaching, Mira Mesa does Intermediate drills/pick up on Tuesday nights. Some begginers and a few ringers but chill.
I've been to the Saturday morning stick time a good amount of times. It wasn't the closest rink to me (until I moved a month ago), so it was more of a Saturday morning treat.

Check the times before you go, but usually there is stick time on one sheet and pick-up on the other. Stick time usually has tons of space and I've never felt crowded. Some guys go back and forth between the two which helps keep space open. Only time I've ever seen it fuller is when stick time is later in the morning on Saturday (9am or so).

The stick time/pickup combo and sometimes 2 hours of ice time for 10$ makes this one of my favorite ice times in SD.

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07-17-2013, 04:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Splitbtw View Post
The stick time/pickup combo and sometimes 2 hours of ice time for 10$ makes this one of my favorite ice times in SD.
I'll definitely be on the lookout for that. I plan on going to the stick times at 5:30 AM on Saturdays for sure if they're not too crowded as you say. Can't beat $10 for two hours.

Are you in North County? I'm in 4S myself.

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07-17-2013, 05:05 PM
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I'll definitely be on the lookout for that. I plan on going to the stick times at 5:30 AM on Saturdays for sure if they're not too crowded as you say. Can't beat $10 for two hours.

Are you in North County? I'm in 4S myself.
4S?

I just moved to Encinitas from Mission Valley (San Diego) about a month ago.

I will add that I haven't been in about a month or so due to injury, so I am not sure if summer increases the turn out or not (can't remember from last year).

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07-17-2013, 05:29 PM
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4S Ranch (next to Rancho Bernardo). We actually have a pretty decent outdoor roller rink here.

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07-17-2013, 09:38 PM
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Since this thread has been revived I thought Id give you all a quick update. I have been back for about 2 months now, and started playing again almost immediately. I play organized pickup with puh2000.com. A great group of guys. Very chill. Check out their website and email them if you are interested. I joined up about a week after getting back.

I play as often as I can, usually once or twice a week in the novice games (once in lower intermediate) even though Im not a "regular" guy (don't have a reserved spot) they almost always need an extra couple bodies and I have been able to play very consistently. Hope to see some of you out there!

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08-19-2013, 05:44 PM
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Originally Posted by stocky View Post
Since this thread has been revived I thought Id give you all a quick update. I have been back for about 2 months now, and started playing again almost immediately. I play organized pickup with puh2000.com. A great group of guys. Very chill. Check out their website and email them if you are interested. I joined up about a week after getting back.

I play as often as I can, usually once or twice a week in the novice games (once in lower intermediate) even though Im not a "regular" guy (don't have a reserved spot) they almost always need an extra couple bodies and I have been able to play very consistently. Hope to see some of you out there!
Stocky- I am interested in signing up for puh2000.com and playing in the Novice division pickup games on Thursday nights at 10pm.

How is the skill level for the Novice division? Is it truly at a novice/beginner level? (i.e. are there any advanced/intermediate players playing down just so they dominate noobs)

I just started playing hockey at the beginning of July and would like to play more pickup games to improve my game.
With that said, I am trying to find pickup games at a beginner level where I am not afraid to try new things or work on my weaknesses. My main goal is to play more pickup games so that I have enough confidence in my game to join the Adult Rec league this Fall at SDIA.

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08-19-2013, 06:15 PM
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Keep in mind SDIA compressed 4 divisions into 2 so if you're looking for all beginners you won't find it there.
Jagr- Thanks for the heads up. I did watch the championship game for Div 5B and noticed a few players who seemed too advanced for a "novice/beginner" league. Although I think if I have another month of practice/skills clinics, I think I can keep up. Do you have any suggestions for a true beginners league in the SD area? Maybe Div 6 at Iceoplex? I appreciate your input.

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08-19-2013, 08:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Scotty21 View Post
Stocky- I am interested in signing up for puh2000.com and playing in the Novice division pickup games on Thursday nights at 10pm.

How is the skill level for the Novice division? Is it truly at a novice/beginner level? (i.e. are there any advanced/intermediate players playing down just so they dominate noobs)

I just started playing hockey at the beginning of July and would like to play more pickup games to improve my game.
With that said, I am trying to find pickup games at a beginner level where I am not afraid to try new things or work on my weaknesses. My main goal is to play more pickup games so that I have enough confidence in my game to join the Adult Rec league this Fall at SDIA.
I haven't played in almost 2 weeks, but the level of play is pretty good in the Novice league. Honestly there aren't many "true beginners" there. Though, most guys are 40+ and it is a pretty easy pace with them (and they are pretty spry for their old age!). No where near the speed of any of the open hockey I have played. They are very welcoming and very encouraging to new players. We have had a few newer guys come out and play and usually they are put on the second (slower) line. So it works our pretty well. You should give it a whirl! Make sure to introduce yourself to your teammates before you step out on the ice!

Fair warning though, there is a father son duo who come on Thursdays (I like the Tuesday group much better) and play Novice, even though the kid played with the Jr Gulls (local travel team). He just dangles everyone and doesn't pass. I don't deny he is very talented, but when you see an 18 year old do a celly because he dangled a bunch of old men and beginners and undressed a novice goalie, it rubs me the wrong way for sure. Pretty frustrating for everyone else because we paid money for ice time too. If you aren't on his line, or playing against his line (which being pretty new you shouldn't), you don't have to worry about it.

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08-20-2013, 11:14 AM
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I might as well give everyone an update. I've been going to Escondido about once a week for the last month for stick time.Went this morning and plan on going again on Friday. Definitely is an awesome opportunity to get my skills back.Waking up at 4:30 AM doesn't make my work day fly by though.

Scotty21 - I'd recommend going to stick time at the Iceoplex if you want to work on things. Everyone keeps to themselves to work on their skills. A couple times a pick up game breaks out, but it's pretty casual and there's plenty of beginners.

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08-20-2013, 01:15 PM
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I haven't played in almost 2 weeks, but the level of play is pretty good in the Novice league. Honestly there aren't many "true beginners" there. Though, most guys are 40+ and it is a pretty easy pace with them (and they are pretty spry for their old age!). No where near the speed of any of the open hockey I have played. They are very welcoming and very encouraging to new players. We have had a few newer guys come out and play and usually they are put on the second (slower) line. So it works our pretty well. You should give it a whirl! Make sure to introduce yourself to your teammates before you step out on the ice!

Fair warning though, there is a father son duo who come on Thursdays (I like the Tuesday group much better) and play Novice, even though the kid played with the Jr Gulls (local travel team). He just dangles everyone and doesn't pass. I don't deny he is very talented, but when you see an 18 year old do a celly because he dangled a bunch of old men and beginners and undressed a novice goalie, it rubs me the wrong way for sure. Pretty frustrating for everyone else because we paid money for ice time too. If you aren't on his line, or playing against his line (which being pretty new you shouldn't), you don't have to worry about it.
Stocky - Thanks for your input. I am 24 and can skate pretty well for a beginner, so I think I should be able to keep up with the pace (it's more my stickhandling and shooting that needs work). Glad to hear they are very welcoming and encouraging to new players. I'll probably try to come out this Thursday or next Thursday!

As for the Jr Gulls kid, that does sound a bit frustrating/irritating but I think I can tolerate a few players like that here and there. I would also like to come on Tuesday if I could (especially because it starts a 9pm), but I do the Skills/Drills clinic w/ scrimmage at SDIA on Tuesday nights. I think eventually once I feel comfortable with my skills, I will stop attending the Tuesday night session at SDIA and play pick up instead with puh2000.


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I might as well give everyone an update. I've been going to Escondido about once a week for the last month for stick time.Went this morning and plan on going again on Friday. Definitely is an awesome opportunity to get my skills back.Waking up at 4:30 AM doesn't make my work day fly by though.

Scotty21 - I'd recommend going to stick time at the Iceoplex if you want to work on things. Everyone keeps to themselves to work on their skills. A couple times a pick up game breaks out, but it's pretty casual and there's plenty of beginners.
304 - I have been to stick time at Iceoplx twice to work on things and it has been beneficial. However being new to the sport, I think I can gain a lot from just playing an organized game which is why I want to find pick up games at a beginner level.

The first time going to stick time was 2 weeks ago and it was in the evening 5:30pm-6:30pm and it was pretty chill. Only about 10 guys (all in high school) and a goalie and like you said everyone kept to themselves and worked on their own thing. I was able to take some shot on the goalie so that was cool.

The second time I went was last Thursday 4:30pm-5:30pm. This time was a little bit different. About 10-15 guys (most in high school and a few kids under 12) and half of the ice was coned off for some class/private instruction. With the remaining half of the ice, a pick up game started among the high school kids. This only left a small sheet of ice between the blue line and the cones set up in the middle for the few of us wanting to work on things. The high school kids playing pick up seemed to advanced for me, so I just worked on my stickhandling and took some shots against the boards. But I did feel it was a bit crowded or that I was always in someone's way.

You mentioned that you go in the morning. How is the turn out? Are there less high school kids? I assume there also isn't any class/private instruction where they cone off part of the ice. Since they stopped doing the 5:30-6:30pm stick time,I have considered going in the morning as well. Its tough because I live near Poway and work in La Jolla, so it would be quite a bit of driving in the morning. I do try to go to stick time at least once a week though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JagrsMullet View Post
Yeah Iceoplex or Kroc has true beginner leagues. UTC might but I'm not 100% sure.
Jagr - Thanks, I will look into those leagues. I have heard good things about the league at Iceoplex. Its just that I have been going to SDIA for the Friday and Tuesday beginner clinics and have made a few friends there already.

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08-20-2013, 02:26 PM
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You mentioned that you go in the morning. How is the turn out? Are there less high school kids? I assume there also isn't any class/private instruction where they cone off part of the ice. Since they stopped doing the 5:30-6:30pm stick time,I have considered going in the morning as well. Its tough because I live near Poway and work in La Jolla, so it would be quite a bit of driving in the morning. I do try to go to stick time at least once a week though.
It's pretty barren. Maybe a couple high school kids every now and then. Usually around 8-10 people there, however hardly ever a goalie. I live in 4S Ranch (next to Rancho Bernardo) and work practically in Poway myself. If you get there at 5 AM, you can go right on the ice (even though it "starts" at 5:30). I usually arrive at 5 and I'm on the ice at 5:15. I get off the ice by 6:30 to ensure I can get home, shower, and head to work at 8.

I've only had an issue with the coned off area on a Saturday morning. Never had it happen during the week.

How is the skills clinic at SDIA?

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08-20-2013, 07:37 PM
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It's pretty barren. Maybe a couple high school kids every now and then. Usually around 8-10 people there, however hardly ever a goalie. I live in 4S Ranch (next to Rancho Bernardo) and work practically in Poway myself. If you get there at 5 AM, you can go right on the ice (even though it "starts" at 5:30). I usually arrive at 5 and I'm on the ice at 5:15. I get off the ice by 6:30 to ensure I can get home, shower, and head to work at 8.

I've only had an issue with the coned off area on a Saturday morning. Never had it happen during the week.

How is the skills clinic at SDIA?
Thanks for the info. Sounds like I will be doing the morning stick time at least once a week, hopefully I'll see you around!

Regarding the skills clinic at SDIA- there are 2 sessions I go to.

Tuesday night (10:10-Midnight): I have only been to this session once (last Tuesday). The turnout was about 20-25 guys and 3 girls. We did a skating/stickhandling drill for the first 30-40 minutes (doing tight turns, circles, crossovers etc. around cones with a puck). Then we did a passing drill for like 10-15 minutes. The last hour we did a scrimmage. However, no goalies showed up so there was a shooting board put up in front of the net with holes cut out for the corners and 5 hole. Goals would only count if you scored in the top corners or 5 hole. The first lines consisted of intermediate players (there were about 8-10 true intermediate players, everyone else was more towards beginner level). Shifts are 2 minutes regulated by a buzzer. I'm planning to go again tonight, so I will give an update if anything changes drastically, but I expect it to be the same. Hopefully goalies will show up.

FYI- Craig, the hockey director, runs a promotion where if you come out to a Tuesday night session you can come back any Tuesday night within the same month for free.

Friday night (6:25-7:25): I have been to this one like 6-7 times. This one can be a bit of a zoo depending on who shows up (players and coaches). To start, they combine this session with the youth hockey development program AND a Goalie development clinic. 1/3 of the ice is used for the Goalie clinic. The rest of the ice is divided up into 4 stations. They start by dividing everyone up into 4 groups (by age). All the adults (mostly beginners) are together, sometimes if the turnout isn't good for adults, they will have some teens play with our group (although sometimes we get a teen in our group who thinks he is a hot shot and just tries to stickhandle around everyone and does not pass). Each group is assigned a drill station and then they rotate the groups every 10-15 minutes. Station 1 is always an edgework/stickhandling drill with cones (skate around the cone with a puck, fowards then backwards etc). Station 2 usually involves a shooting drill. Station 3 is usually some sort of passing drill. Station 4 is usually a small pick up game (2v2 or 3v3 or 4v4 depending on how many ppl there are in the group). Overall this session is good when the right people show up but can be a disaster if they do not (see below).

WARNING: I mentioned this session can be a bit of a zoo and here is why-
The coaches that come are volunteers. Sometimes good ones will show up who will actually coach you or try to correct you if you make a mistake. Sometimes they wont say a word after giving you instructions on the drill. Sometimes they don't show up, in which case they have some teens from their house league run the drills (notice how i said "run the drill" as they don't really coach). For example, this teen was running one of the small pick up game stations and when our Adult group showed up, he just said "you guys can do whatever you want" then went to chat with his buddy at another station. There were 3-4 intermediate guys in the group that day and they decided we should do 2 vs 2. All the intermediate guys started the 2 vs 2 game; however they didn't say what they were playing to. After about 5 minutes of watching them, the rest of us (all beginners) get pissed because as beginners we would like to have the opportunity to play to get better (plus we paid) and no one was really regulating this station. So I step in and tell them we are switching to 4v4 with a few ppl subbing so that everyone has a chance to play. Believe it or not the story gets worse...A couple of guys would go to the bench to rest and get some water so our team is a man short. The teen decides to jump in to even out the teams, yet he is just trying to dangle through the whole team and does not pass once...WTF

Sorry for the long rant- just thought I would give my honest input and give you a heads up of what to expect if you consider the Friday session

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08-20-2013, 08:46 PM
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Sorry for the long rant- just thought I would give my honest input and give you a heads up of what to expect if you consider the Friday session
I appreciate it. That's the best breakdown I've seen of the clinic (their website is useless). Tuesdays sound great, but I'm a little turned off by the time it happens. Guess that's the reality though. I really want a little bit more structure than my individual practice, so I'll probably end up going.

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08-22-2013, 04:51 PM
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I'll be checking out the Pickup 2000 hockey thing for the first time tonight during the 845 slot.

Will be the first time back playing in over two months.

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08-23-2013, 02:21 PM
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I'll be checking out the Pickup 2000 hockey thing for the first time tonight during the 845 slot.

Will be the first time back playing in over two months.
How'd it go?

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08-23-2013, 03:31 PM
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Yeah Iceoplex or Kroc has true beginner leagues. UTC might but I'm not 100% sure.
I'll add a couple things here:

1. Don't forget about the Kroc Center Adult Rookies Class on Sunday nights. John Stoddard is back running the show and he's as good as it gets for instruction. You get some drills to start and then a scrimmage. Similar format to Tuesday SDIA but will a little more structure and coaching. You will find this to be mostly true rookies with some D5 guys in for the extra skate. If you want to get into the Kroc D5 league, you have to go to the placements and there are limited spaces available due to it's popularity.

2. Tuesday SDIA. This is a good deal the way Craig has it going with the two-for-one offer each month. I did this for about three years off and on and it's great for conditioning and getting in on some pickup. Sometimes Craig focuses more on passing and skating and sometimes it's all about shooting. You will get a little bit of coaching but mostly you are on your own. When it's crowded, he turns on the 2 minute buzzer to keep the long shifting down. There do tend to be guys who are much better than the beginner/intermediate level but I've always looked at that as an opportunity to see how it is supposed to be done.

3. Friday SDIA. This is just a gong show. You are better off at stick time.

4. Escondido Mornings. No better bang for your buck. Here's where you really learn to skate. If cones are your thing, the have some for you to use on the bench.

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08-23-2013, 04:01 PM
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How'd it go?
Not too bad. The level was lower than I'd generally prefer, but it was nice to get out there and the legs moving.

Hands definitely are still working their way back, not that there was much there before.

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08-26-2013, 02:10 PM
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I play a few times a week at Iceplex. I only play pick up and I have nothing bad to say about it. You can email Gil at hockey@puh2000.com. Gil rents the rink out and then in turn charges you for the pick up. Our fee is $25 per session for about 1:15, and Gil will set up the lines and provide jerseys and socks. He has the rink on several nights and a different times. We could always use more skaters. It is a great time, non-contact and for the most part everyone gets along.

On Fridays we hang out in the parking lot bbq sausages and drink beer until about 2:00 am.

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09-05-2013, 01:45 PM
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Anyone playing in one of the leagues starting up this week?

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