Volume 3 Issue 4 | December 20, 2018
By Tom Gullen
This is the final edition of our newsletter for 2018. For the next two weeks, we take a break from structured hockey. I think a break from organized games and practices is a good thing; our travel teams have been together for close to four months and our House teams for close to three months.

Some of you are headed to the ski slopes, and others to the beaches….lucky you! To those of you here in town, I also say “ Lucky you.”
Winter vacation for me as a kid meant hockey. Hockey morning, noon, and night. Back in the pre-climate change era we could bank on two weeks of great outdoor ice which meant five, six, sometimes more, hours of ice time daily. This was all of the unstructured variety; me, a puck, some friends, and a rink. That is all we needed for fun.
Unfortunately we cannot bank on outdoor ice over the break, but opportunities abound for your hockey player to skate.

Yes, Gullen’s Pond is opening! The goal is to be up and skating before Christmas and hopefully, earlier. There will be open hockey daily for all age groups as well as public skating…. and the cost is nothing! Free ice! Get on the Winnetka Park District website for up to date schedules for the break.
Watts Ice Center also has multiple opportunities for open play on both the main and studio rinks. There are fees but it is a great facility with great ice and lots of opportunities to skate.

Of course, you can also drive into Chicago and skate at the Ribbon or Millennium Park for a day of fun in the city.
So the goal is get out and skate; you don’t need a coach, you don’t need a referee or an opponent. This is the best way to enjoy the game.

Lastly, keep the families of the Humboldt Broncos in your thoughts and prayers….many families will be spending this Christmas without their sons for the first time. 

Have a great Holiday break!
Who Says You Can't Come Home?
By Andy McNerney
Winnetka is my hometown. I grew up on Rosewood Ave. with both sets of grandparents less than three blocks away. My parents went to New Trier, got married on Hibbard Rd., and raised 4 boys here. Now they live within walking distance of their grandchildren. Although Winnetka is my hometown, I have spent many years living in other parts of the country. And yet, with each move, hockey always made me feel like I was home.

In 1992, as a 7th grader at Washburne, my parents gathered the family in our living room—an act typically reserved for Christmas morning. I knew something was wrong. “We are moving to Minnesota” my dad said. He kept talking. Something about his job, a good opportunity, you guys will love it, blah blah blah.
As he explained why we were moving to a different state I thought of my friends and the fear of making new ones. I thought about my hockey team. I loved everything about being a Winnetka Warrior: The locker room before a game, my patched corduroy green jacket, out of town tournaments, getting the post tryout phone call and learning that I had made the team. I even loved 6:00am practices. We were on the heels of a season in which we won NIHL and State with a young coach named DJ behind the bench. Making friends in Minnesota would be hard but doable. Taking Warrior hockey away from me? Not gonna happen! What would I do with my corduroy jacket?
Chuck Lauer was a founding father of the Winnetka Hockey Club and instrumental in the construction of the Winnetka Ice Arena. He served as President of the Club, and coached various teams within the Winnetka and later New Trier West Hockey Clubs. Chuck was active in the hockey community well into his 60s. He was also the founder of the On-Tyme senior hockey club which is now run by his son, Randy. He passed away in 2017 after a valiant fight with Leukemia. Chuck's son Randy would also become President of the Winnetka Hockey Club for several years. 
Chuck had 3 loves: Family, Country, and Hockey. For the past several years, a group of adult hockey players have held an annual father/child hockey game to raise money for the wounded warrior project. Following his passing, On-Tyme dedicated itself to honoring Chuck's legacy through a scholarship dedicated to Winnetka Hockey families that have served our country or serve as first responders.

The goal will be to provide financial assistance to families within our hockey community. We hope to create a lasting legacy to Chuck's contributions to our country and our hockey program. Additionally, we hope to continue our support of the Wounded Warrior Project, a group whose mission was near and dear to Chuck's heart. 

In addition to support from the On-Tyme hockey group, we are soliciting the support of the Winnetka Hockey community. We would appreciate your support for this great cause. 
It Comes with the Territory
By Dan Bauer (Wisconsin Prep Hockey) -When the news of Mike McCarthy’s firing swept across social media disgruntled Packer fans celebrated and applauded the actions of team president and CEO Mark Murphy. Those fans that live and die with the results on the field each week couldn’t wait to move on from the coach with the second most wins in the history of the NFL’s most storied franchise.
For reasons not completely known, coaching is an occupation that most fans believe they are capable of performing at a high level. I cannot think of any high paying jobs that I feel more qualified to do than those who were trained to do them. Perhaps it is that All Conference award in high school, or that undefeated tee-ball season or maybe even that fantasy league championship that builds that false sense of coaching acumen in the casual fan. Armed with the 20/20 spectacles of hindsight they second guess every decision that goes wrong and always have the right answer. Should have run, should have passed, should have punted, should have gone for it all easy decisions if you know the outcome. Unlike those decisions that are made on the couch, coaches don’t have the luxury of hindsight; their decisions are made in real time and carry real consequences. It comes with the territory. 
Impact Hockey Holiday Clinics
Join coaches Bobby Acri and Adam Cheris for Impact Hockey's Holiday Hockey Clinics at Winnetka Ice Arena December 29 through January 3. These 90 minute on-ice sessions are a blend of power-skating, ADM skill stations, small area games and a healthy dose of FUN! Age groups are further broken down into smaller groups by age and skill level. Click button for clinic schedule and registration information. Hope to see you there!
Christmas Clinic at NSIA
Limited Spots Left!
Join Simply Defense at North Shore Ice Arena December 27-28 from 5:40pm to 7:40pm for our Christmas Clinic! We offer 2 hours of on-ice instruction daily with a focus on gap control, winning 1-on-1 battles, pressure vs. containment, backward acceleration, lateral mobility and more! Click button for more information and registration.