Santa Rosa, CA (PRWEB) June 21, 2012
Fifty four teams, 14 Divisions, 862 players and 135 hours of non-stop senior hockey action, Snoopy’s Senior Hockey Tournament is coming to town. This year marks the 37th annual tournament and teams from across North America and Canada will descend on Sonoma County, July 7 through 15, for what Peanuts creator Charles Schulz referred to as a “Summer Camp for Seniors”.
A spin-off from the Senior Olympics movement, Snoopy’s Tournament is only open to players 40 years and older and includes divisions all the way up to 70 years and older. Many teams and players have attended the tournament for over 30 years and this year’s oldest age group quickly filled two divisions – that’s over 100 players all past their 70th summer.
“My birthday always falls in the week of July when the tournament is on,” says Mark Sertich, this year playing with the Montreal South Shore Sages. Sertich has been coming to the Snoopy’s tournament since 1983 and is the event’s oldest competitor, and likely the oldest active hockey player in the United States. Sertich continues, “I'll be 91 by the time the tournament ends on Sunday July 15th and being on the ice at this tournament is the best present I can possibly think of. I always love to come out for the tournament, and even though I always go home a year older, I always feel so much younger.”
Since his death in 2000, Charles Schulz’s widow Jean and his eldest son Monte continue to host the tournament in honor of his love of the game and to share Schulz’s passion for Ice Hockey with the community. The annual traditions developed over the last three decades are maintained to this day and the tournament is a week-long celebration of sportsmanship, camaraderie and seriously competitive hockey.
Each team plays three games in four or five days so it can be a grueling timetable but the arena's General Manager, Justin Higgs is quick to note “We understand this is a vacation tradition for a lot of players so we work hard to develop a game schedule that offers time to enjoy all the benefits of beautiful Sonoma County. It’s definitely all about the hockey, but we concede that not everybody wants to come all the way to California and skip the wineries, golf or fabulous coastline.”
“We love Snoopy’s Tourney,” says tournament coordinator Mike Kovanis, “it is the pinnacle of the Hockey year at the rink and seeing guys in their 70s hit the ice with such enthusiasm is an inspiration. These players still have the skills to run circles around the younger guys and their stamina is the only thing that holds them back.”
Admission for spectators is always free at Snoopy’s Home Ice and for hockey fans the tournament offers a wealth of opportunities to see some great on-ice action. Games will be played from 7am until 11pm all week long and when the summer temperatures soar in Sonoma County there is no cooler place to be than Snoopy’s Home Ice.
About Snoopy’s Senior World Hockey Tournament
Dates: Saturday July 7 – Sunday July 15
Times: First game starts at 7am, Last game starts 10:40pm (full schedule available at http://www.snoopyshomeice.com)
Divisions/Teams: Manager/Captain contacts available on request
About Snoopy’s Home Ice
Often called the most beautiful ice arena in the world, Snoopy’s Home Ice offers a unique atmosphere for families to enjoy recreational ice skating and a world-class facility to support the goals of local athletes in the sports of Ice Hockey and Figure Skating. Home to the Warm Puppy Café and Snoopy’s Gallery & Gift Shop, the arena complex is also a popular destination for Peanuts fans from across the globe.
Snoopy’s Home Ice is located at 1667 W Steele Lane, Santa Rosa, California, 95403.
Open Monday to Sunday 6am – 10pm, Public Skating Sessions daily, call for times.
Spectators welcome, it’s always free to watch.
Images are available on request. For more information consult the arena website at: http://www.snoopyshomeice.com
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