Silver Creek is a small rural community about 20 kilometres southwest of Salmon Arm, BC. It is a community whose children don’t have as much opportunity to play or even watch hockey, the nearest rink being a 25-minute drive away.
During the 2007 Esso Women’s Nationals, Silver Creek Elementary School students got a glimpse of hockey, some for the very first time.
The school has just five classrooms and only a handful of the hundred students actually play hockey. The older students took in a game at the Sunwave Centre and a little less than half had never seen the building before or watched a hockey game.
The Ontario Etobicoke Dolphins team came to the school to speak with the students. In the Grade 5 class, assistant coach Jamie McGuire and player Kerry Weiland answered the many questions the students had.
Kerry, also part of Team U.S.A. who is working towards the 2010 Olympics, told the students how she was just like them. She grew up in Palmer, Alaska, on a dairy farm.
She said that playing hockey broadened her world, traveling as far as Switzerland to play. Hockey also gave her a full university scholarship where she earned two degrees. She encouraged them to study hard and to play outside as much as possible.
Several members of Team Ontario joined the Kindergarten class in the gym for a game of floor hockey, leaving a positive hockey experience for all the students.