Good year for ice should mean a great year for Pond Hockey Classic
By DAN SEUFERT
Union Leader Correspondent | January 29. 2014 6:46PM
Tom Noble of Center Harbor pours lake water onto an ice rink surface, preparing for this weekend's 5th Annual Pond Hockey Classic on Merediith Bay. More than 1,400 amateur players will be participating in the tournament. (DAN SEUFERT PHOTO)
"That's the ice singing to us," said Noble, a Center Harbor resident working for Scott Crowder, the founder and operator of the New England Pond Hockey Classic, held each year on bay ice.
Ben Long of Holderness measured the ice by sight when he used a motorized ice fishing drill to make a hole to the water, which is then pumped onto the surface of the 22 rinks they are preparing for the tournament, which is in its fifth year.
"It's usually about 15 inches," Long said. "You can tell it's been a good year for ice."
It looks like it's going to be a great year for the classic. The first tournament was in February 2010 with just over 100 skaters. This year, more than 225 teams are set to play the rinks on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
The tournament has many sponsors, from local businesses such as Biederman's Deli and Pub in Plymouth to corporate sponsors such as Labatt of Canada.
The tournament donates money raised to charities and is dedicated to bringing back hockey "as it used to be, on ponds," Crowder said.