November/December 2016

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34 / NOVEMBER.DECEMBER.2016 RINKMAGAZINE.COM PHOTOS: COURTESY OF USA HOCKEY SOCCER, BASKETBALL, CHESS, HORSEBACK RIDING, DANCE; YOU NAME IT, families have probably looked and locked into it. With such an increase of fun and competitive opportunities, us rink managers need to make sure that ice activities are in the shuffle. It's paramount to get out into the community and mingle with potential new customers. But how do you do that? What do you use to promote your facility? And how do you promote your facility and all that you house within in it in a fun and engaging way? As director of operations at Mullett Ice Center in Hartland, Wisconsin, I wondered the same thing. That's when we introduced—and found success in—our floor hockey outreach program. I've personally been involved with floor hockey for the past couple of years. I began volunteering at our local YMCA as a guest floor hockey instructor, where I would take my two sons and teach a four-week floor hockey unit. Soon, the YMCA class evolved into me visiting area schools to be a guest phy-ed teacher. And thus, our floor hockey outreach program was born. A floor hockey outreach program doesn't take much. A basic practice plan, some patience and a lot of energy is all you really need to get a lot of kids excited about hockey in a short amount of time. WHY IT WORKS You probably don't need much convincing that getting out into the public to promote your rink is a good idea. There's no question that getting in front of as many potential customers as possible will also benefit your arena. Here's how we've found our floor hockey program to be increasingly successful: • No "Maybe" Joiners: In our outreach program we primarily target elementary schools. By going into schools and getting in front of kindergarten, first and second graders, you take out Floor Hockey Outreach REAL PROGRAMS Floor Hockey , Floor hockey classes get your facility's name out in the community. by CRAIG PETERSEN, CIRM

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