Letters to the editor: Hockey Day Minnesota impresses

Hockey Day 2014 unforgettable

Wow! Saturday, Jan. 18, 2014, is a day that many people in Elk River will not soon forget. Our city was on display for Hockey Day Minnesota.

Elk River Mayor John Dietz and Gov. Mark Dayton at Hockey Day Minnesota.

Things couldn’t have gone any better. Despite a few inches of fresh snow, the Handke Pit was a beautiful sight with a bright sun and temps in the 20s.

This great day would not have been possible without a tremendous amount of work by the Hockey Day steering committee, all the committee co-chairs and the hundreds of volunteers that in some way contributed to one of Elk River’s best ever community events.

The media spotlight was on Elk River with one positive story after another. Hockey Day Minnesota was more than about hockey. It showed that we have people who truly care about their community and are willing to work to put on a major event like this.

Elk River has received rave reviews for the way in which the entire 10-day spectacle was handled. We have set a pretty high standard for Hockey Days in the future.

The major partners in putting on this great week were the city of Elk River, ISD 728, Elk River Youth Hockey and the Elk River Chamber of Commerce.

These four came together to produce an outstanding result.

I want to extend my heartfelt thanks to everyone who had a hand in Hockey Day Minnesota and to the more than 4,000 people who attended the event. You did our city proud. — Elk River Mayor John Dietz


What a day it was at Handke Pit

Wow! What a day Hockey Day Minnesota 2014 was. I don’t think the visionaries who dreamed up to bring HDM 2014 to Elk River over two years ago could have ever imagined how perfect it could have turned out.

What a showcase for our city, our hockey community and the Handke Pit. The bar has been set sky high for future HDMs by the city of Elk River, ISD 728, the Elk River Area Chamber of Commerce and the Elk River Youth Hockey Association. Family and friends of mine who made the trip down from Cloquet could not stop talking about how incredible the atmosphere was and how fortunate they were to be a part of HDM 2014.

As a family with three kids in the Elk River Youth Hockey Association, we would like to thank the visionaries, the countless volunteers and sponsors who put an amazing amount of time, energy and money to bring this event to the city of Elk River. Memories that will last a lifetime for all involved were made on a day so perfect, Norman Rockwell would have struggled to capture it on canvas. So, to all of you who made HDM 2014 possible, thank you! Thank you! Thank you! — Brock Carlson and Lisa Carlson and family, Elk River

Special thanks to local sponsors

Thank you to thousands of hockey fans who came out on a beautiful winter day on Saturday, Jan. 18, for Hockey Day in Minnesota. This year, Handke Stadium – affectionately known to us as The Pit – in Elk River was chosen at the site for the eighth annual Hockey Day. It was incredible to see the talent of both the boys and girls Elk River Elks hockey teams on display!

A special thank you to the local co-sponsors of the event – the city of Elk River, the Elk River Area Chamber of Commerce, Elk River Area School District, the Elk River Youth Hockey Association and many others – for showing Minnesota that Elk River is truly “Powered by Hockey,” making Hockey Day in Minnesota an historic day for our community! — Nick Zerwas, Elk River (Editor’s note: Zerwas is a legislator in the Minnesota House of Representatives.)