PHOTO BY MICHELLE JAY
As part of Hockey Week Across America, the National Women’s Hockey League is coming to Detroit on Sunday, Feb. 17 to lead a clinic for 50 girls and show its support for the U.S. National Team.
#NWHLinDetroit will see five NWHL players coach a clinic from 8:30 – 10:30 a.m. at the Clark Park Ice Rink in Southwest Detroit – where the community rallied to save the city’s last outdoor rink. When the clinic is over, the league’s players are hosting all of the children and their parents and guardians at the USA–Canada game at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit at noon. In total, more than 150 people will be the NWHL’s guests at the finale of the Rivalry Series.
Representing the NWHL are three players in the league with Michigan roots: Madison Packer of the Metropolitan Riveters, Brittany Ott of the Boston Pride, and Taylor Marchin of the Connecticut Whale. Joining them will be Boston captain Jillian Dempsey and Riveters star Rebecca Russo. The USA-Canada Rivalry Series features 15 current NWHL players.
“#NWHLinDetroit is an opportunity to take a day to make a difference in a city that’s important to our game, league and especially Madison, Brittany and Taylor and their families,” said NWHL Commissioner Dani Rylan. “Anyone who has seen our players run youth clinics knows it will be a special morning in Clark Park, and everyone’s excited to see Team USA play Canada at the Red Wings’ fantastic new arena. During Hockey Week Across America, this is a way for the NWHL to uphold the NHL’s Declaration of Principles and provide a positive hockey experience.”
Hockey Week Across America (originally Hockey Day) was created by USA Hockey in 2008 to engage the hockey community in celebrating the sport at all levels and exposing the game to new audiences. In 2013, as part of the NHL’s Winter Classic legacy initiative, the NHL made a substantial contribution to upgrade the rink at Clark Park.
"Having the opportunity to collaborate with the NWHL and give our girls at Clark Park the experience of skating with professional athletes is really what our program is all about,” said Clark Park youth hockey coach Troy Anderson. “This experience will advance hockey in Southwest Detroit and inspire the next generation of players."
PHOTO BY TROY PARLA
PHOTO BY TROY PARLA
Packer, Ott and Marchin all grew up in the Detroit area and played youth hockey for the Little Caesars program.
“The city of Detroit holds a special spot in my heart,” said Packer, who was raised in Birmingham and won four state championships with the Little Caesars program. “It is where my dad grew up as a kid, where I grew up learning and playing the game, and a city that I have watched transform and make a comeback over the years. I grew up playing at City Arena just down the road from Clark Park and Little Caesars Arena. To return for #NWHLinDetroit, and give back to a community that gave so much to me in the early stages of my career, means just as much to me as it does to the kids we will be skating with on the weekend. I am forever grateful to the Ilitch family and the Little Caesars program for all the opportunities they afforded me by supporting women’s hockey, and I am excited to be a part of continuing to grow the game in that community.”