MONTREAL, FEBRUARY 20, 2012 – What started off as one enthusiastic parent’s proposal to the Gardenview Elementary School in St. Laurent’s Governing Board in 2010 has culminated into a very successful inaugural year for its hockey program.
Parent and coach Nick Feldman’s proposal to Gardenview’s Governing Board in the fall of 2010 led to the creation of a new Gardenview Hockey Committee formed by Governing Board members Michael Delis (General Manager), John Kappos, and Martha Karras along with the physical education teacher Luc Pepin, to prepare a proposal for a new program.
With the support of the Gardenview teachers, Governing Board members, Home & School Association and staff, including the school’s principal, Tina Lavranos, the Gardenview Hockey Program rules and regulations were established and in the spring of 2011, the Gardenview Governing Board approved a proposal for a new trial hockey program for cycle 3 students for the 2011-2012 school year.
Team tryouts were held in October and final player selections for the main team and reserve list of spares were made by Mr. Pepin based on demonstrated hockey skill and ability during the team tryouts. As part of the Gardenview Hockey Program guidelines, for students to qualify and maintain a spot on the main team and reserve list of spares, students would need to maintain at least a 75 percent average in key subjects and demonstrate exemplary behaviour and sportsmanship both in school and at the hockey arena.
To create awareness and to promote school spirit, the Gardenview Hockey Committee enlisted the help of all the Gardenview students to create a name and logo for the new school hockey team. Many submissions were received and the Gardenview Governing Board selected the winning bid and named the team the Gardenview Gators!
The Gardenview Hockey Program included weekly morning pre-school practices by professional instructors from the Lac St-Louis Midget AAA Lions and former Montreal Canadien Gaston Gingras, off-ice training by Mr. Pepin during lunch hours, and enthusiastic Hockey Quebec certified parents helping out behind the bench in post-school exhibition games against other private and public elementary schools.
The Gardenview Gators went undefeated in their exhibition game schedule and that success coupled with their exemplary behavior led to an unexpected and very exciting request by LCC for the Gardenview Gators to participate in the prestigious annual LCC Invitational Hockey Tournament at the end of January 2012, bringing together elementary school teams from across the country in friendly competition.
This inaugural year for the Gardenview Hockey Program has generated incredible pride for the entire school and a lifetime of cherished memories for all involved. With many of the team players returning in the next school year, the future of the Gardenview Hockey Program looks very bright indeed!