Grand Rapids, Michigan, February 15, 2013 – Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital’s Sled Wings Hockey Team is hosting players from across the Midwest to celebrate Hockey Day in Michigan and “Hockey Weekend Across America.”
Three simultaneous events will be held on Saturday, February 16, 2013:
The U.S. Women’s National Sled Hockey Team will be in Grand Rapids to compete against the Sled Wings
Coopersville, Michigan native Susie Kluting has been on the U.S. team since its inception in 2011. The Women’s U.S. National Sled Hockey Team competes annually in the Four Nations Cup and International Ice Hockey Federation Women’s World Championship.
An Hour of Ice Time for Special Hockey
Athletes with autism, Down syndrome, and traumatic brain injuries will have the third free skate this year to try traditional, stand-up hockey. The Grand Rapids Amateur Hockey Association hopes to form a Special Hockey team.
Sled Hockey Camp - a first for Grand Rapids
The camp is designed to further the skill levels of young and inexperienced Sled Hockey players. We hope to draw 30-40 campers for the weekend from as far away as Detroit, Ohio, and Indiana.
Saturday, February 16
Grand Rapids Edge Ice Arena
566 100th St. SW, Byron Center, MI 49315
Noon - 1:15pm - USA Women vs. Adult Sled Wing
1:30pm - 2:30pm - Special Hockey Free Skate
2:30pm - 3:30pm - Sled Camp
Sled hockey rules are virtually identical to traditional hockey, except participants sit on bladed sleds. Players use two shortened hockey sticks with a blade on one end and a pick (similar to a toe-pick on a figure skate) on the other end, which enables them to propel themselves across the ice. As in traditional hockey, checking, penalties, and hard slap shots are abundant. Sled hockey made its Paralympics debut in 1994. It originated in Sweden in 1940 and was introduced in the United States in 1989, with the first team based in Minnesota.
About Mary Free Bed Wheelchair and Adaptive Sports Program
Approximately 250 athletes participate in Mary Free Bed’s Wheelchair and Adaptive Sports Program. There are nearly a dozen competitive teams, some with national rankings. Sports include basketball, hand cycling, sled hockey, quad ruby and tennis. In addition, an annual Junior Wheelchair Sports Camp is held every summer. Clinics are also held for camping, golfing, kayaking/rowing, racing, sailing, scuba diving, snow skiing, softball, water skiing and wall climbing.
About Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital
Mary Free Bed is a not-for-profit, nationally accredited, acute care rehabilitation hospital. For more than 120 years, Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital has served the needs of Michigan children and adults - restoring hope and freedom through rehabilitation. The scope of rehabilitation services on the Mary Free Bed campus is not found anywhere else in Michigan: 80 acute care inpatient beds, extensive outpatient programs, as well as home and community services. The combination of comprehensive services and an exclusive focus on rehabilitation enable specialty physicians and staff to achieve outstanding clinical outcomes. For additional information, visit www.maryfreebed.com or call 800.528.8989.