TIMMINS - Registrations are now being accepted for the Paul Gagne Hockey Development Camp scheduled to run Aug. 4-7 at the McIntyre Arena.
Gagne, the coach and general manager of the Timmins Rock, of the NOJHL, has been operating the hockey school for a number of years.
“We will have a few Rock players on hand who will help out on the ice,” he said.
“Those kids (Rock players) love to give back to the community and give some of their knowledge to the kids.”
Goaltender Logan Ferrington and defenceman Kealey Cummings are among the Rock players who have confirmed they will help out at the hockey school in August.
“I love it too,” Gagne said.
“Some of the kids from when we first started are either now playing for me or have played for me in the past.
“It is kind of neat and I love it.”
Gagne is pleased to see the hockey school return to a more familiar location for 2015.
“I am glad that we are back at the McIntyre Arena this year,” Gagne said.
“We were at the Whitney Arena for the last couple of years and when you have five groups, you need more dressing room space. That way the players can leave their equipment in the dressing rooms after the first session and they don’t have to bring it home.”
On an average year, the Paul Gagne Hockey Development Camp attracts close to 100 youngsters.
“You don’t want too many, just the right amount,” Gagne said.
“The way we run our program, we divide the ice up into one-third sections and it works well when you have 10 or 11 kids per third of the ice.
“It also works out well for dressing room space. There is lots of room for the kids.
“The thing I really like about this hockey school is that it is a four-day hockey school. When it is limited to four days, the kids are enthused every day. There is no negativity. The staff is enthused every day.
“It is upbeat and positive and the kids have a great time. That is what I really enjoy about these four days.”
Many of the participants at the Paul Gagne Hockey Development Camp return year after year.
“We have a lot of families who bring their kids back,” Gagne said.
Gagne, an Iroquois Falls native, played 390 games in the National Hockey League — with the Colorado Rockies, the New Jersey Devils, the Toronto Maple Leafs and the New York Islanders — where he scored 110 goals and earned 102 assists, for 212 points, while spending 127 minutes in the sin bin.
Gagne was selected 19th overall by the Rockies in the 1980 NHL entry draft and was with the team when the franchise moved from Colorado to New Jersey prior to the 1982-83 season.
Gagne suffered a back injury against Winnipeg on March 25, 1986, and missed remainder of 1985-86 season and entire 1986-87 and 1987-88 campaigns.
He signed as a free agent by the Maple Leafs on July 28, 1988 and was then traded by the Maple Leafs with defenceman Jack Capuano and forward Derek Laxdal to New York Islanders for forwards Mike Stevens and Gilles Thibaudeau in December of 1989.
Gagne scored 25 goals for the Rockies during the 1980-81 season and 24 goals for the Devils during the 1984-85 campaign.
Gagne, who scored 48 goals and recorded 110 points during his final year in the Ontario Hockey League with the Windsor Spitfires, also spent six seasons playing in Europe.
Players registering for the Paul Gagne Hockey Development Camp prior to May 15 can take advantage of special early bird pricing.
Players in Group 1 (age 7-9), Group 2 (age 10-12) and Group 3 (age 13 – 16) registering by that date pay $248.48 (HST included), while those in Group 4 (Goalies) pay $124.30 (HST included) and those in Group 5 (age 4 – 6) pay $67.80 (HST included).
After May 15 prices increase to $271.20 (HST included) for players in Group 1, Group 2 and Group 3; to $146.90 (HST included) for players in Group 4 and $90.40 (HST included for players in Group 5.
Players in Group 1 will be on the ice from 8-9:30 a.m. for skill development and from
1:15-2:15 p.m. for three-on-three competitions.
Group 2 players will be on the ice from 9:45-11:15 a.m. for skill development and from 2:30-3:30 p.m. for three-on-three competitions.
Players in Group 3 will be on the ice from 11:30 a.m. until 1 p.m. for skill development and from 3:45-4:45 p.m. for three-on-three competitions.
Group 4 players will be on the ice from 5-6:15 p.m. for goaltending instruction.
Players in Group 5 will be on the ice from 6:30-7:30 p.m. for three-on-three competitions.
For more information visit the hockey school’s website at www.gagnehockeydevelopment.com.