It might seem like summer hasn’t even started yet

Ready for a return to the ice in Nelson?

In a time of constant rising costs and pressure on the family bottom line, the Nelson Minor Hockey Association is providing a bonus

In a time of constant rising costs and pressure on the family bottom line, the Nelson Minor Hockey Association is providing a bonus for the upcoming 2012-13 season.

Registration for the winter season has now opened and parents who want their kids skating by September should be happy to fill out the form.

“We’ve reduced our fees,” said association president Tony Maida. “For the last two years we have been successful with BC Gaming Grants and we are letting our association members take advantage of that.”

Rates for most divisions have dipped by almost $100 for the season. For players in atom (nine and 10 year olds) to midget (15 to 17 year olds), the cost is $391 for the season if you sign up before August 15. The cost for the novice division (eight and younger) is less and the price to pay for rep hockey is an additional $290. Included in the fees is also $100 worth of raffle tickets which players have the option to sell to reduce the costs even further.

“It’s a great opportunity for our association and for hockey in general,” said Maida.

Like all youth sport associations, Nelson Minor Hockey attempts to keep the costs as low as possible to ensure access to all those who desire to play.

“As long as we continue to get these grants then we can keep the rates low,” said Maida. “We’re very thankful to the government for this type of assistance.”

Maida also points out that the association offers an equipment loan program and KidSport funding is available to those who apply.

Requiring indoor ice and costly equipment does mean hockey is not cheap. But with at least two ice times a week for six months, the cost per session is not as costly as many think.

“We would like to see more kids playing hockey obviously,” said Maida. “There is a perception that hockey is expensive, but really it’s not that expensive.”

The reduced rates last until August 15 at which point a $150 late fee will be added.

For more information head to the association’s website at nelsonmha.ca.

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