Page 11 - VigoreChicago1

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"Movie Star", who sports a classically
bushy mustache, and "Dr. Long Shift," who
some would say spends too much time on
the ice, might not brag about their nick
names. That
camaraderie does
not keep the action
on the ice from
being competitive.
There are no
penalties even
though the action
can get intense.
Collisions are
normally followed
with smiles and
laughter. Friendly
chatter can be heard from the benches
throughout the game, and one of the
goaltenders, "Hef", rarely makes a save
without letting the shooter know who won
that battle.
While the mood is often friendly, it does
not distract the players from performing
their roles, playing their positions, and
competing for an hour and twenty minutes
each week.
Spots on the Silver Hockey roster are
earned through strong play and keeping
the games close despite the varying
experience levels of the skaters. Some
players, like Johnny’s instructional director,
Coach Ken Rzepecki, skated in professional
leagues. Others played as amateurs in the
U.S. and Canada leagues. A few players
have been skating for only a short time, but
make a strong effort to hold their own
against the more experienced competitors.
To feel the rush of scoring a goal or making
a big save while playing a so-called "young
man’s game" is a big part of why the Silver
skaters return each week. The result is an
assortment of men from completely
different
backgrounds coming
together each week
to play the game they
love. From executives
to surgeons, lawyers
to public relations
executives, bankers,
business owners and
tradesmen, the
players likely would
not have had the
opportunity to build
such a strong bond without the
game of hockey and the Silver
skate. Whatever it costs
personally to get to this point in
life, it is a moment in time to
cherish.
Each player was meant to be on
the ice. There may come a time in
each skater’s life, when he asks
himself, "should I stop playing
this sport?" Men in the Silver
Hockey Club may think back on
days when the game was easier
with fewer bumps and bruises
during the competition. To feel
the rush of scoring a goal or
making a big save, to play a so-
called "young man's game" with
the vigor and respect for the
game that develops only through
ample ice time.
After the early Silver Hockey
skate finishes just
before 9 A.M., there are often much
younger skaters eager to take the ice. The
kids watch in amazement as the Silver
skaters step off the ice and remove their
helmets revealing their gray hair.
It is common to hear comments from the
youngsters like, "for old guys, they still can
shoot and skate." For these young skaters,
it is difficult to see into their own future
and understand how the desire to compete
and skate could still exist.
These Silver skaters look forward to the
next time they hit the ice when once again
the child in them will emerge.
9
Chicago Lifestyle
NHL Hall-of-Famer Mario Lemieux
amusedly said that, "Every day is a
good day for hockey."
That sentiment especially rings true for
the skaters of the Silver Hockey club, men
who love the game of hockey, who skate
just to skate and hope through it all they
can do it at least one more time next week.
CHICAGO SILVER
Hockey Players
all over 50 years old