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High school hockey played outdoors

Two area high school hockey teams are playing a fundraising game to help support their hockey programs.
Posted at 5:20 PM, Jan 04, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-04 19:20:48-05

Outdoor hockey has been seen at the NHL level, but not at the high school level.

Two area high school hockey teams are playing a fundraising game to help support their hockey programs.

Using snow blowers and shovels, Palmer Lake has been turned into an ice hockey rink.

“I, like many other hockey players have grown up watching the Winter Classic right? The outdoor hockey games that the NHL puts on, phenomenal events just bringing a community together that might not come see a hockey game, come see a hockey game,” said Scott Bradley, the Head Coach of Lew-Palmer Hockey.

Scott Bradley is the head hockey coach for Lewis-Palmer, he and his team take the ice against Cheyenne Mountain.

“Super excited to host those guys tonight and combine both the Colorado Springs area, as well as the Monument and Palmer Lake local area for a fun night watching hockey,” Bradley said.

The excitement level is at an all-time high, Chris Sarver is a parent of two of the players.

“They’ve been looking forward to this for a long time now, like I said this is a very unique experience for them so they’re really happy to have an opportunity to do this,” said Chris Sarver.

The setup hasn’t been easy. It took 35 Palmer Lake family members to clear space for the rink.

“The ice has been the biggest challenge with the warm temperatures, making sure it’s a thickness that’s safe to support two teams playing on it,” Bradley said.

Volunteers filled divets with water to freeze and thicken the ice on the lake. Bradley says player safety is most important and he believes the lake has now gotten to a point where the ice is structurally sound.

“We’ve got risk mitigating factors just in case things become a little weak or a little suspect,” said Bradley.

Assuming all goes well the plan is to host more outdoor hockey games in the future.

“We called it the first annual Palmer Lake Outdoor Classic in hopes of doing this every year,” Bradley said.

All money raised from tonight's game go to funding the hockey programs.