Griffins Youth Foundation to host “Try Blind Hockey” event in January


By @MichaelCaples –

The Griffins Youth Foundation, along with the Grand Rapids Griffins and Tim Kane, will host a free “Try Blind Hockey” event on Sunday, Jan. 26.

The event will take place from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the east rink of Griff’s IceHouse at Belknap Park.

Visually impaired persons of all ages from Michigan and surrounding states are encouraged to attend. All equipment will be provided, and on-ice guides – including Griffins coaches and former players – will be on-hand to help the participants learn how to skate, puckhandle, shoot and pass.

Online registration by Dec. 16 is encouraged; registrations will be accepted until the event is full. More details can be found here.

Kane, the captain of the U.S. Blind Hockey Team, is a Grandville, Mich., native and an athletic trainer.

“Blind hockey is a very young sport in the U.S. with lots of room to grow,” said Kane, who is legally blind due to a juvenile degenerative condition. “It’s exciting that organizations like the Griffins and their foundation are creating these opportunities for people with impairments, and it’s especially exciting for people like myself who enjoyed the game when they were younger and then seemingly lost the ability to play.

“Imagine a kid playing a sport that he or she never thought would be possible,” Kane added. “It’s a lot of fun to see people get out on the ice for the first time. We want people to see that hockey really is for everyone.”

A description of blind hockey from the press release:

Blind hockey is the same exhilarating, fast-paced sport as ice hockey with only one main difference – all of the players are legally blind. The sport features an adapted puck that makes noise and is both bigger and slower than a traditional puck.