Detroit has long been known as “Hockeytown,” but for some of Detroit’s youth, opportunities to play the sport have been beyond reach. Through community partnerships with the Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD), the Boys & Girls Clubs of Southeastern Michigan, Detroit Parks & Recreation Department and the Mike Ilitch School of Business at Wayne State University, more than 30,000 youth in the city of Detroit will experience the sport through Learn, Play, Score, a new program that offers students events and engagements over the next two years.
“This is all about empowering the youth in our city,” said Christopher Ilitch, President & CEO, Ilitch Holdings, Inc., and Governor, Detroit Red Wings. “Hockey is more than just a sport. It is about teamwork, dedication, maintaining a healthy body, mind and spirit. We are committed to being a leader in finding innovative ways to connect younger generations to hockey in the community, and the Detroit Red Wings Learn, Play, Score program will provide that very opportunity.”
This program is funded through an initial $1 million investment in partnership with the Detroit Red Wings, the Detroit Red Wings Foundation and the NHL/NHLPA Industry Growth Fund to grow and expand access to the game of hockey across the city of Detroit.
“We are thrilled that the Ilitch Organization and Detroit Red Wings are engaging the city of Detroit to grow and make hockey more welcoming for everyone in the area,” said Kim Davis, NHL Executive Vice President, Social Impact, Growth Initiatives and Legislative Affairs. “It is critically important to give back to cities like Detroit to make sure we are collaborating with them to develop opportunities for those who need it most.”
Ice rinks within the newly formed Detroit Hockey Rink Collaborative (DHRC), including East Side Hockey Ice Arena, Jack Adams Memorial Arena and the outdoor rink at Clark Park, will each offer affordable Learn to Skate and Little Wings Learn to Play programs.
The initiative will initially consist of five innovative and engaging hockey-related platforms.
Unique hockey platforms include:
- Street Hockey in the D with Detroit Parks & Recreation
and Detroit Public Schools Community District
- After School League (Detroit Parks & Recreation)
- Summer Fun Center Sessions (Detroit Parks & Recreation)
- School Edition (Physical Education Curriculum Integration -Detroit Public Schools Community District)
- Hockey in the Classroom with Detroit Public Schools Community
- Future Goals™ – Hockey Scholar and STEM Day at Little Caesars Arena presented by Chevrolet
- Esports & Hockey with Boys & Girls Clubs of Southeastern Michigan
Ice hockey platforms include:
- Detroit Hockey Rink Collaborative and On-Ice Hockey Pathway Scholarships with Clark Park, East Side Hockey Ice Arena and Jack Adams Memorial Arena
- Open Skate Sessions at Little Caesars Arena
Learn, Play, Score was announced in a press conference on Tuesday, Feb. 18 in the award-winning Little Caesars Arena. Ilitch Holdings President and CEO and Detroit Red Wings Governor, President and CEO Christopher Ilitch gave opening remarks. He was joined by Kim Davis, Executive Vice President, Social Impact, Growth Initiatives & Legislative Affairs for the NHL, and Rob Zepp, Manager of Special Projects for the NHLPA.
Learn more about Detroit Red Wings Learn, Play, Score at www.DetroitRedWings.com/LearnPlayScore.