Hockey Canada’s Open Letter to Canadians


First, and most importantly, to the front-line and essential workers who have gone above and beyond around the clock to keep Canadians safe – a simple thank you is not nearly enough for what you have done over the last three months.

Second, to our Members, partners, local hockey associations, volunteers and fans across Canada, thank you for keeping the spirit of hockey alive. Unprecedented times have called for unprecedented efforts at every level of the game.

As provinces and territories phase in a plan to reopen in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, there are questions about when hockey will return, and how it will look when it does.

Hockey Canada and its Members are diligently working on a multifaceted return-to-hockey plan that will happen when, and only when, provincial and territorial governments and health authorities deem it safe to do so.

This plan includes everything from health and safety regulations to communications, seasonal structure, customer engagement and national teams.

As the return-to-hockey plan progresses, it will do so at different speeds, and at different times, across the country, based on direction from health authorities. And the game will look different, that much we do know. We ask for patience as we continue to work towards ensuring hockey plays its role in bringing the sports community back.

The health and safety of everyone involved in the game will determine when we return, not our desire to get back on the ice. When our country is ready, Hockey Canada will be ready. Until then, continue to follow the guidelines set by your provincial and territorial government to help limit the spread of COVID-19. Only by working together will we be able to make a difference and safely return.

For more information and regular updates, please visit

Thank you for your passion and dedication to our game, and we hope to see you around the rink as soon as possible.

Michael Brind’Amour

Chair, Board of Directors

Tom Renney

Chief Executive Officer

Scott Smith

President & COO


Photo credit: Rob Wallator

Important update for 2020-21 Officials Clinics

RED DEER - On-ice officials in Alberta are asked to take note of the following changes being implemented by Hockey Alberta and the Hockey Alberta Officials Committee for registration and clinics for the 2020-21 season.

For new officials, and returning Level I and II officials, in-person certification clinics will not start until after Thanksgiving weekend. The current targeted start date is the weekend of October 17-18, but that is subject to change based on developments within the province regarding COVID-19.

For Levels III-VI officials, they are eligible to sign up for virtual (video conference) session to obtain their certification for 2020-21. These clinics will be available starting in late September.

For any official who was certified in the 2019-20, that certification remains valid until January 31, 2021. Normally, certification from the previous season remains valid until December 15, but for this season, Hockey Canada has provided a special exemption extending that deadline.

Clinic registration will begin in mid-September (specific date TBC). Check the Hockey Alberta Officials website ( for updates and current information pertaining to officiating and the 2020-21 season.


Hockey Alberta Board of Directors Recruitment Notice

The Alberta Amateur Hockey Association (Hockey Alberta) is seeking qualified candidates for one (1) Director at Large position on its Board of Directors. Deadline to submit a nomination package is AUGUST 31, 2020.


Hockey Alberta is the governing body for organized amateur hockey in the Province of Alberta. The Board provides oversight and approves the vision and policy framework for the organization to carry out its operations. The Board operates under a policy governance model, and is accountable to its Members, ensuring that the mission, vision and values of Hockey Alberta are carried out by the organization. Operations are delegated to the Chief Executive Officer. The Board holds monthly meetings, either in-person in Hockey Alberta’s head office in Red Deer or via phone/ digital platform.

Candidate Qualifications

For 2020, the Board has approved the Nominations Committee to seek candidates that meet one or more of the following key criteria in each of two main categories:

I. Diversity

  • Female
  • Visible Minority
  • Younger Age Demographic

    II. Skills / Experience
  • Advocacy (such as government relations / lobbying)
  • Communications (such as public relation / sales/ marketing/ branding)
  • Hockey Alberta Member Knowledge/ Experience

In addition to the competencies identified above:

  • Previous experience on the Hockey Alberta Board is an asset.
  • Previous experience on a not-for-profit board and knowledge of the workings of a board from a good governance perspective are preferred.
  • An ICD (Institute of Corporate Directors) designation or equivalent training or experience working with a Board is an asset.
  • Experience and understanding of the workings of a Provincial Sport Organization is an asset.
  • Successful completion of a Criminal Record Check is required.


Process Overview

The Governance Committee of Hockey Alberta has created an external three-person Nominations Committee that includes a former Chair of the Board of Directors.

All submitted applications are reviewed by the Nominations Committee. Through the application and interview process, the Nominations Committee will prepare a group of qualified candidates endorsed by the Nominations Committee to be presented to the membership for election.

Board of Director positions are elected by the Members of Hockey Alberta at the Annual General Meeting (AGM). The 2020 AGM is scheduled for Saturday, November 21. The intention is to have the meeting in person, however there are provisions if a virtual meeting is required. Elected individuals will serve a term of three years.

Each candidate is required to be nominated by a Member of Hockey Alberta, as defined in Article 2 of the Bylaws of the Alberta Amateur Hockey Association.

The links below to the Hockey Alberta website provide more information on Hockey Alberta Bylaws, and the Board’s Governance Model, Code of Conduct, and Conflict of Interest policy. Candidates are required to complete a conflict of interest declaration with their application.


For more information, please contact:

Rob Virgil Rob Litwinski

Nominations Committee Chair, Hockey Alberta CEO, Hockey Alberta

[email protected] [email protected]

780-915-2873 403-342-6777


Bob Clark - 1937-2020

RED DEER – Bob Clark, a Life Member of Hockey Alberta, and a member of the 2020 Induction Class of the Alberta Hockey Hall of Fame, passed away on Thursday, July 9 at the age of 83.

Bob Clark’s Obituary >

Bob, a resident of Carstairs, was involved in hockey in Alberta for more than half a century, displaying a passion for growing and improving the game for athletes and administrators.

Bob got his start as a goaltender in minor hockey, and served as a coach, general manager, administrator and committee member at the local, provincial and national levels. His involvement included work with Carstairs Minor Hockey, Hockey Alberta, and the Hockey Alberta Foundation.

Bob was the face of Junior A hockey in Alberta. From 1987-95, Bob was general manager of the Olds Grizzlys who captured three Alberta Junior Hockey League championships and the Centennial Cup in 1994. Bob also served as team president for two years. Bob served as the AJHL’s board chair and Hockey Alberta’s Junior A Committee chair, and was a special advisor to the AJHL, and director with the Friends of Alberta Junior Hockey Scholarship Program.

In Bob’s professional life, he was elected to the Alberta Legislature in 1960, and in 1966, he was appointed Alberta’s (and Canada’s) first-ever Minister of Youth. As Minister, Bob commissioned a study with the Alberta Amateur Hockey Association on the state of hockey in the Province. Recommendations from this report led to the development of coaching and refereeing clinics across Western Canada.

Among his other numerous accolades, Bob was inducted into the Alberta Amateur Sports Hall of Fame in 1974, received Hockey Alberta’s President’s Award in 2003 and Centennial Award in 2007, received Hockey Canada’s Outstanding Volunteer Award in 2009, was the Chair of the Alberta Hockey Hall of Fame Selection Committee for four years, and was a member of Hockey Alberta Foundation Board of Directors for six years.

During Bob’s involvement in hockey, he was strongly supported by the wife of 55 years Norma, their two children Dean and Donna, and their families.

Expressions of sympathy can be sent to PO Box 553, Carstairs, AB T0M 0N0. story > story >


In Memoriam: George Kallay

RED DEER - George Kallay, a former Hockey Alberta board member and Chair of the Hockey Alberta Foundation board, passed away on Saturday, July 18 at the age of 74.

In addition to his roles with Hockey Alberta and the Hockey Alberta Foundation, George served as a player, parent, referee, volunteer and executive member with Hockey Canada for more than two decades.

For his service to hockey in Alberta, George was inducted into the Alberta Hockey Hall of Fame in 2015. His other accolades include a Hockey Alberta Development Award in 2005, a Hockey Alberta Centennial Award in 2007, Hockey Canada Volunteer of the Year in 2008, and the Alberta Cup 25th Anniversary Builders Award in 2011.

George’s resume with Hockey Alberta and Hockey Canada is immense, as he served as Vice Chair of Hockey Development for Hockey Alberta from 1998-2003, the Chair of the Hockey Alberta Foundation from 2005-2009, and Chair of the Hockey Canada Development Committee from 2005-2008. He also spent many years with the Team Alberta program in various roles, and was Director of Operations for the gold-medal winning Team Alberta U16 Male at the 1999 Canada Winter Games, and was once again inducted into the Alberta Hockey Hall of Fame in 2018 as a member of that group.


Join Our Team!

Hockey Alberta is now accepting applications for the position of Coordinator, Member Development. This is a maternity leave position based out of Red Deer, AB and will extend until September 2021. Under the direction of the Senior Manager, Member Development, this position is responsible for leadership/support in the assigned safety, coaching and officiating areas within Hockey Alberta. These components consist of the Hockey Canada Safety Program and player safety committee, coaching certification programs, officiating clinics and Member Development.

The successful candidate will join a team ensuring that Hockey Alberta provides support and leadership to Minor Hockey Associations.

Job Posting >

The deadline to apply for this position is Friday, July 31.


InStat Sport on board as AEHL and AFHL video analyst partner

RED DEER – The Alberta Elite Hockey League (AEHL) and Alberta Female Hockey League (AFHL), along with Hockey Alberta are excited to announce a new partnership with InStat Sport.

The partnership sees InStat Sport provide the AEHL and AFHL and their teams with a reduced rate on utilizing the statistics and analytical features of the InStat Hockey platform.

“InStat Sport is looking forward to growing our hockey platform across North America and we are excited to partner with Hockey Alberta’s elite leagues as part of that process. When hockey returns, we are ready to provide AEHL and AFHL teams with our leading video analysis and stats platform,” said Mark Yates, Director, InStat North America.

InStat Sport, founded in 2007, is a leading provider of performance analysis services in soccer, basketball and hockey. Hockey clients include teams in the NHL, CHL, NCAA, and USports. The company’s North American base is in Philadelphia.

The InStat Hockey platform is used by league and federation offices, coaches, scouts and management as a communication tool for coaching, player development and/or scouting purposes. At the team level, coaches and players can receive detailed reports after each game, statistical breakdowns, and links to corresponding video or playlists for the purpose of development and exposure to the next level.

“Hockey Alberta is pleased to be able to partner with InStat Sport connecting the organizations and teams of the AEHL and AFHL with the industry leaders in video stats and analytics. We see this as a partnership that will not only benefit individual teams but gives us an international platform to showcase our league talent as well,” said Mike Klass, Director of Business Operations for Hockey Alberta.

For more information regarding InStat, go to their website,, or check out their YouTube channel.


Parent Engagement Series - Part Four: Game Day Nutrition

RED DEER - Hockey Alberta is pleased to continue its Parent Engagement Video Series, aimed at helping parents navigate through the ups and downs of being a hockey parent.

Episode Four features Edmonton Oilers/Edmonton Eskimos Head Team Physician Dhiren Naidu, and focuses on the importance of proper game day nutrition for athletes.

Parent Engagement Guide >

For more information on nutrition, and for other parent tips, head to


Hockey Alberta’s Return to Hockey Plan

RED DEER – Hockey Alberta released its Return to Hockey Plan on Tuesday, providing the framework and minimum standards for Hockey Alberta’s Members to undertake hockey activities.

The Plan also allows players, coaches, officials, parents and other stakeholders to understand the current guidelines for operating sanctioned hockey for the 2020-21 season.

The Return to Hockey Plan and its appendices, along with other announcements and documents pertaining to COVID-19 and its impact on hockey in Alberta, can be reviewed on the Hockey Alberta website:


The Return to Hockey Plan incorporates the current requirements outlined in Stage 2 of the Government of Alberta’s Relaunch Plan, health and safety guidelines from Hockey Canada, and programming, registration and sanctioning for Hockey Alberta.

The health and safety of all participants in the sport is of paramount importance in all activities outlined in the Return to Hockey Plan. The threats and challenges posed by COVID-19 require specific steps to be taken to allow hockey back on the ice, and this plan addresses those requirements.

“It is important for our Members and families to know that there is a plan for hockey in Alberta for the coming season. Our players will be able to have fun, socialize with teammates and peers, and enjoy positive experiences in our game,” said Rob Litwinski, CEO of Hockey Alberta. “The Plan includes options to group players according to skill levels and engage in competition as they continue to develop their skills in preparation for returning to regular season play.”

The Return to Hockey Plan has three components:

  • Off-Season Skill Development
  • Development Season
  • Regular Season

The Development components provide direction on types of hockey activities that can be offered utilizing Physical Distancing or Cohorting; requirements for organizations in determining who is eligible to participate; estimated timelines for each component; travel and other limitations; and registration and sanctioning requirements.

The Return to Hockey Plan – including the timelines included within it - is subject to change, as new guidelines and requirements are put in place by the Government of Alberta.


Hockey Alberta announces new partnership with Vereburn Medical Supply

RED DEER – With the ever-changing landscape and an elevated focus on athlete and participant safety, Hockey Alberta is excited to announce a new partnership with Vereburn Medical Supply.

The partnership sees Vereburn Medical Supply provide Hockey Alberta members with a reduced rate on complete medical kits and supplies.

“Vereburn Medical Supply is honored and excited to partner with Hockey Alberta to provide members with access to exclusive medical kits as well as extended discounts on their required sports medicine supplies” said Matt Veres, President Vereburn Medical Supply.

Vereburn, based in Calgary, is Canada’s leading wholesale manufacturer and distributor of products and equipment focusing on the sports medicine, emergency medical, healthcare and first aid markets. Current partners include the Canadian Colleges Athletic Association and U Sports, and Vereburn was an All-Star Contributor to the 2019 Canada Winter Games.

“Hockey Alberta is pleased to be able to partner with Vereburn Medical Supply in a way that ensures the safety of our participants is front of mind and provides a service to our members. When our members start preparing for a safe return to hockey, we hope the partnership with Vereburn is utilized getting the necessary medical first aid supplies in place,” said Mike Klass, Director of Business Operations for Hockey Alberta.

For more information on Vereburn Medical Supply, go to


AFHL unveils new logo

RED DEER - The Alberta Female Hockey League (AFHL) has unveiled its new logo that will be used for the 2020-21 season and beyond.

"We are incredibly proud of the direction the AFHL has taken elite female hockey in Alberta over the last four seasons," said Kendall Newell, Manager of Female Hockey. "Our new logo represents the bright future that we envision for our league and players."


ICE TIMES: Edition 20:11

Hockey Alberta Newsletter


Hockey Canada’s Tom Renney, chief executive officer, and Scott Smith, president and chief operating officer, issued a statement on the return-to-hockey process in Canada. For Hockey Alberta, this statement means that when arenas reopen as part of the government of Alberta’s Relaunch Strategy, our Members may resume on-ice, sanctioned activities – subject to compliance with current health and safety standards in Alberta and Hockey Alberta’s Return to Hockey plan.



The structure of AAA male hockey in Alberta will have a different look for the 2020-21 season as the Alberta Elite Hockey League (AEHL) was announced on May 30 as the new home for Hockey Alberta’s elite male players.


Hockey Alberta Newsletter


Although ’follow your dreams’ is a common phrase, few people have taken that advice to heart quite like Kodie Curran. At age 30, the Calgarian recently signed his first NHL deal with Anaheim Ducks - a two-year, one-way contract, the culmination of years of hard work, perseverance, and a seemingly unmatched love for the game.



Hockey Alberta is running a series of online coach professional development sessions over the coming weeks. With a focus on coaches in the minor hockey system, these sessions will cover a number of topics ranging from Hockey I.Q. to coach interviews. Upcoming sessions will take place on June 11, 17, and 18.


Hockey Alberta Newsletter


As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to keep us all at home, it’s important to keep active, eat healthy, and even work on some hockey skills. Hockey Alberta is working with Crash Conditioning, Ali Stead (@never2late2learn.hky), and various goalie and Team Alberta resources to bring you weekly tips on how to stay ready for hockey’s return.


Hockey Alberta Newsletter

Hockey Alberta Newsletter


Online Coach Development Session - Player Habits

RED DEER - Hockey Alberta is offering another free online seminar for minor hockey coaches on Thursday, June 11 at 7:00 p.m.

The topic of Thursday’s session is ’Player Habits’, and will be delivered by Hockey Alberta Coach Mentor Fran Gow.

Register >

This presentation dives into the habits and characteristics that are recommended for players to be successful. These habits can be implemented and taught to all levels of minor hockey players at different stages of age and development.


  • All sessions are open to Hockey Alberta members at no cost,
  • Sessions will be hosted on the ZOOM meeting platform.
  • You will need to sign up for a free ZOOM account prior to joining the session.
  • You will receive email confirmation with the ZOOM meeting link 24 hours prior to the start of the session.

If you have did not receive the link 24 hours prior to, or you have questions regarding the sessions, please contact Stephen Pattison - [email protected]


Hockey Canada update on COVID-19

This morning, Hockey Canada’s Tom Renney, chief executive officer, and Scott Smith, president and chief operating officer, issued a statement on the return-to-hockey process in Canada. The statement included the following announcement:

“After ongoing discussions with the board of directors, our chief medical officer, the 13 Members and public health authorities across the country, it has been determined that the best approach for a return to hockey in Canada is to allow each Member the opportunity to work with authorities in their respective regions to determine when it is safe to return to the ice in areas that fall under their jurisdiction. We expect the timing of each Member’s return to hockey will be different, but will be based on the advice of their government and public health authority.”

For Hockey Alberta, this statement means that when arenas reopen as part of the government of Alberta’s Relaunch Strategy, our Members may resume on-ice, sanctioned activities – subject to compliance with current health and safety standards in Alberta and Hockey Alberta’s Return to Hockey plan. The reopening of arenas in Alberta is still slated to occur in Phase 3 of the province’s Relaunch strategy. Hockey Alberta is participating in information sessions with the government, and if we can assist with the plan to reopen arenas, we will.

Hockey Alberta continues to work with Hockey Canada, other provincial branches, and Provincial Sport Organizations in Alberta to develop a Return to Hockey Plan for this province. The plan will include safety and risk guidelines and requirements, along with a phased-in approach on the ice. Hockey Alberta has identified a group of Member representatives who will review the proposal, and we are committed to circulating a formal draft to all Members by June 15. Throughout the process, we expect several revisions as circumstances change and feedback is received.

In the meantime, the statement by Hockey Canada means that sanctioned, off-ice hockey-related activities may be held, as long as they are operated in accordance with current health and safety standards in Alberta. Off-ice training consists of any activity organized by a Hockey Alberta Member or sanctioned organization that takes place off-ice and meets specified criteria as outlined by Hockey Canada.

It there are questions pertaining to the Hockey Canada announcement or Hockey Alberta’s Return to Hockey plan, please submit via email to: [email protected].

The full Hockey Canada statement can be found at Hockey Canada’s Return to Hockey guidelines can be found at


Hockey Canada Statement on Racism

CALGARY - The following is a statement on behalf of Hockey Canada from Tom Renney, chief executive officer, and Scott Smith, president and chief operating officer.

“Recent events have amplified the inequality that exists among us, and now is the time to use the Hockey Canada platform to encourage discussion and change.

We know racism exists in the world. It is far too common here in Canada, and people of colour experience racism daily. Unfortunately, racism and inequality have occurred in the hockey community. We recognize that and understand that our organization needs to do more to combat acts of injustice and ensure a safe space for everyone.

Hockey Canada and its 13 Members need to listen and learn, have difficult conversations about our own shortcomings and be open to change if we are going to make progress towards a better future for all participants.

It is easy to talk about being inclusive, welcoming and safe, but now is a time to listen and support those facing racism. We need to do better, be leaders in equality and be part of the solution.”


New structure for AAA male hockey in Alberta

RED DEER – The structure of AAA male hockey in Alberta will have a different look for the 2020-21 season.

The Alberta Elite Hockey League (AEHL) was announced on Saturday as the new home for Hockey Alberta’s elite male players.

“The new Alberta Elite Hockey League brings all elite male hockey in Alberta under one set of operating standards which is an important step in ensuring that players within the AAA hockey stream are offered a consistent program and experience, regardless of their age division of hockey or location,” said Neil Robertson, chair of the Elite Male Committee.

The decision was made in December to restructure elite male hockey in the province. An extensive review process concluded that a restructured program would be more cost-effective for the members and stakeholders, while helping raise the status of elite male hockey programming, consolidating volunteer workload at the team and organizational levels, and aligning league operations. There was also a Name the League contest.

The AEHL is comprised of the U18 AAA Division (formerly the Alberta Midget Hockey League), U16 AAA Division (formerly the Alberta Minor Midget Hockey League), and U15 AAA Division (formerly the Alberta Major Bantam Hockey League). Renaming the divisions, to align with Hockey Canada’s new Age Division Names policy, was a key impetus to the overall restructuring decision.

In addition to the new league and divisional structures, the AEHL will be housed on a new, state-of-the-art website platform currently being designed by HockeyTech. The AEHL website is being built in conjunction with a new web platform for the Alberta Female Hockey League, with the goal of providing a one-stop location for all news and information pertaining to elite hockey in the province.


COVID-19 Update – Message from the CEO

To the Members of Hockey Alberta:

During the Member Zoom meetings held in early May, we spoke about the work being undertaken on various fronts to prepare for the return of hockey both in Alberta and across the country. We talked about how there were many questions to which we were looking to obtain and develop the answers.

Last week we all received the update letter from Hockey Canada with regard to COVID-19. Hockey Alberta is aligned with the details outlined in the letter.

Make no mistake, we want hockey back. As the Provincial Sport Organization for hockey in Alberta, this is not just our game, it is our passion.

Everyone involved with our sport recognizes the benefits of hockey for our participants – physically, socially, and emotionally. We know that hockey makes a difference in people’s lives, helps develop individual and group social skills, and is important for the physical literacy of our youth.

Simply said, we believe hockey is important. However, it is not more important than the health and safety of the participants, the larger hockey community, and society in general.

That is why Hockey Alberta is working with Hockey Canada, other provincial branches, and fellow Provincial Sport Organizations in Alberta as we develop our Return to Hockey Plan.

The intention is to provide the framework and minimum standards for any organization in our province to undertake hockey activities. That way, when facilities reopen, and athletes are allowed back on the ice, they can participate safely and securely and in a manner where the participants, their families and all of our other partners and stakeholders are protected and given the best chance for success.

As most of you are aware, opening arenas and recreation facilities currently is in Phase III of the province’s COVID-19 relaunch plan, and no firm timelines have been established for the implementation of Phase III.

We know that not having specific dates or timelines can be unsettling. But it is important for everyone to remember that amateur hockey of any kind cannot be played in Alberta until the government and health officials authorize rinks to be open and outline the minimum safety standards that must be followed.

Hockey Alberta’s responsibility is to have a plan in place that can be adapted to meet those requirements and allow participants back on the ice in a safe atmosphere.

The current focus is to work to ensure our game is ready to go in the fall, if allowed as part of the province’s relaunch plan. We also want to be prepared if rinks open sooner than that because we know that our participants, and the hockey community in general, are clamouring to return to hockey.

What will be included in the Return to Hockey Plan?

First and foremost, the plan abides by government directions with a focus on the health and safety of all involved. It reflects the reality that there will be new requirements in place for the safe operation of hockey facilities, which will impact hockey participants, including a checklist of items that participants will be required to do to be able to step on the ice. This will include items such as when to arrive at the arena, masks, sanitizer, parent access to help tie skates etc. The plan will also include resources and processes that Hockey Alberta will be developing to help our Members establish programming procedures to meet these requirements in a safe environment.

The plan calls for a phased-in approach, in keeping with the planning undertaken by government and health authorities. At this point, the plan has four phases, starting at the developmental program level and working up to a return to the traditional 5-on-5 game. As circumstances evolve and improve, we will update and adapt the plan to best allow for the return of hockey in Alberta.

Hockey Alberta will be seeking input from our associations, leagues, club teams, accredited schools and other stakeholders to help establish a coordinated process and the detailed timeline and parameters of what activities may look like in each phase.

We are committed to keeping our Members, and the larger hockey community, updated as the Return to Hockey plan is finalized and then made ready for implementation.

Rob Litwinski, CEO
Hockey Alberta


Online Professional Development opportunities available for coaches

RED DEER - Hockey Alberta is running a series of online coach professional development sessions over the coming months, with the first three sessions set for May 28, June 3 and June 4. With a focus on coaches in the minor hockey system, these sessions will cover a number of topics ranging from Hockey I.Q. to coach interviews.

All sessions are open to Hockey Alberta members at no cost, and will be held on a ZOOM meeting platform.

Register >

Date Time Topic Description Facilitator Moderator
Thursday, May 28 6:30pm Mental Performance in Sport What is mental performance, and why it is important for coaches to begin a toolbox of awareness. Barry Medori Stephen Pattison
Wednesday, June 3 6:30pm The Fundamentals of Hockey Sense Exploring all pre-requisite skills of hockey I.Q. Mike McGinnis
Thursday, June 4 6:30pm Preparing for a Coach Interview Understanding what Managers and Administrators look for in Coaching Interviews. Kevin Higo Matt Weninger


U16 AA Pilot Project set for 2020-21 season

RED DEER - The South Central Alberta Hockey League (SCAHL) and Hockey Calgary, in partnership with Hockey Alberta’s AA Hockey Committee, have agreed to operate a U16 AA division during the 2020-21 season, in order to review and determine the place for this category of hockey going forward.

This Pilot Project stems from ongoing conversation in Alberta about providing additional options for 15-year-old players entering the U18 division (formally Midget), so that they can continue their development with like sized and like skilled players. Currently, the U16 AAA category of hockey is the only opportunity for 15-year-old players across the entire province to participate exclusively together. Additionally, the Rural & Edmonton Hockey League (REMHL) provides this option for players in select areas north of Red Deer.

The AA Hockey Committee has identified 11 host Minor Hockey Associations, who will each operate one team within the U16 AA division. Of those 11, seven currently host AA programs in the SCAHL, while four operate AA programs within Hockey Calgary. Additionally, those seven Host MHAs from the SCAHL have had Recruitment Areas assigned to them, which will allow them to draw 15-year-old players from their designated Recruitment Area to form their team.

Full details on the Pilot Project are outlined on the New for 2020-21 page.

NEW FOR 2020-21 >


Photo Credit: Rob Wallator

Hockey Alberta announces changes to Team Alberta Summer Development Programs

RED DEER - As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, Hockey Alberta has been monitoring and evaluating our 2020 Team Alberta Summer High Performance Programs. The primary concern is ensuring the safety of our players, officials, coaches, volunteers and families involved in our development programs.

As a result, Hockey Alberta is cancelling the 2020 U16 Female Summer Development Camp and postponing the U18 Female and U16 Male High Performance Summer Camps.

Hockey Alberta and Team Alberta urge everyone to take all precautions to stay safe. Follow the directions of local, provincial and federal health and government authorities as we work together with fellow Albertans, and citizens across the country, to help resolve this situation. More information about Government of Alberta protocols and recommendations can be found here.

Thank you for your patience and cooperation as we continue to work through these uncharted waters.

For more on the changes to the program, please review this FAQ document.

Why did Hockey Alberta revise its 2020 High Performance Camps?

The prime concern for Hockey Alberta is player safety. With arenas closed across the province, athletes have not been able to train on ice for several months. We do not want to risk injury to any athlete by returning too quickly. We want to ensure that our athletes have the ability to return to the ice prior to our camps and that each athlete has the best chance for success at these camps.

Why did Hockey Alberta cancel the U16 Female Development Camp?

Due to the uncertainty around when camps can be held again, Hockey Alberta has streamlined its player development camp schedule. Only the camps that lead to team selection have been kept on the schedule for 2020 as these programs lead a Regional/National competition. Conducting the U16 Male and U18 Female High Performance Camps allows Hockey Alberta to identify the players for the WHL Cup and U18 National Championships.

Do you have tentative dates for rescheduled camps?

No, these camps are postponed until further notice. Without a clear timeline on returning to the rinks, we do not feel comfortable scheduling tentative camps at this point in time. We want to ensure that we are following the guidelines from the Provincial Government as well as Hockey Canada’s Return to Hockey framework on when it is safe to return to hockey. We will work to ensure that all athletes across the province will be able to access on ice training and arena facilities prior to attending a Team Alberta High Performance Camp.

What is the process that will be used for camp invitations?

Hockey Alberta is not extending any camp invitations to athletes at this time. Hockey Canada, Hockey Alberta, and the other Member Branches are reviewing the situation and its potential impact to previously scheduled Regional/National competitions. As more information becomes available, we will work with our Member Associations, Leagues and Club Teams to ensure Team Alberta camps will not conflict with team schedules so athletes are able to participate. Once dates are set, Hockey Alberta will solicit input from coaches, scouts, and other personnel within our scouting network to determine a short list of players. Invitations will then be issued from the Hockey Alberta office.

Will the U18 Female and U16 Male High Performance Camps be the same structures as previous years?

No, each camp will have a reduced number of participants.

Will the WHL Cup and U18 Nationals be hosted in their original time frame?

Hockey Canada, Hockey Alberta, and the other Member Branches are currently reviewing the situation. An update to this FAQ document will be provided once more information is provided.

If you have any questions regarding the Team Alberta High Performance Programs, please contact either Mike Kraichy, Manager of Team Alberta ([email protected]) or Kendall Newell, Manager of Female Hockey ([email protected]).