I played in the Copper League championship game at the rink tonight. We played against our favorite team, the Angry Housewives. They beat us 3-2, in a good solid fair game, and when it was all over we all gathered together for a big photo and I thought my heart was going to break just a little bit.
Not because we lost. If we’re going to lose, I want the Housewives to the be the ones to beat us; they’re good folk. But because this might be the last real hockey season.
NorCal Indoor Sports might be closing. For various reasons, the rink is finding itself without a lease come the end of August. And if another location isn’t found soon, this might be it.
I walked into NorCal four years ago having never held a hockey stick, never seen a hockey game the whole way through, and having never thought of myself as athletic by any means. Mostly on a whim and a desire to do something as different from ballet as possible, I signed up for a hockey class, and then I tried a pickup game, and found a spot on a league team. I found out some things about myself. I found out I can actually play sports. And that maybe most my limitations are self-applied. And I found friends. In the intervening time NorCal has become a huge part of my life, and my family’s life. Sometimes showing up to a Friday night pickup game, swinging my legs over the wall and feeling my skates connect with the floor… it’s the best part of my week. The thought of losing that, personally, is pretty awful.
But this is bigger than that.
This is a business that hosts fundraisers for most the schools in town. They give free skating lessons to kids. They provide a safe inexpensive place for young teens to hang out on a Friday night in an active and drug- and alcohol-free environment. Last winter when I was working on that fundraiser for the winter homeless shelter I walked into the rink and asked if they might be able to help out, and the manager didn’t even hesitate. He just asked me what we needed. This is a business that supports the community. Woodland it better for it being here. And I’m hoping the community can help out now.
So here’s what I’m asking. Woodland is a pretty tight-knit town. If you’re local maybe you know someone who has something like a warehouse (in town or nearby) that would fit a hockey rink inside who is looking for a new tenant, or someone who’s about to lose a tenant and maybe hasn’t posted the place for rent yet? No one's looking for charity here, just a good lead on an available spot at a fair price. If you have an in on a local location, call up the rink. Or contact me and I’ll get you connected with the right person. I’m in no way affiliated with the rink except as a grateful customer, but I can make an introduction to folks who run the place.
Look, maybe this is a long shot. But as one of my teammates is fond of saying, you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. So Woodland? I’m shooting this one you’re way.
What’ve you got?