The next one takes place Friday, Feb. 9 at the care centre, and this one will feature members of the Olds Midget AA hockey team. Previous renditions, including one last November, have involved members of the Olds Grizzlys Junior A hockey team.
Volunteer Resources coordinator Tina Richards says the game has been held at the care centre for about the past four years.
“It’s just basically with the swim noodles that you use in the swimming pool. We use those as sticks and then we have these big balls that we blow up and those are basically your pucks,” Richards says.
“So it’s basically get the ball from one end of the room to the other. We put two players as goalies on each end – opposing goalies, so it’s kind of fun. We kind of keep the balls moving as best we can before they deflate or break,” she adds with a laugh.
“We put a player beside a resident, player, resident, player, resident kind of thing. So it keeps everyone intermingling. It’s really a movement activity for the residents to keep them moving, to keep their mind focused – that kind of thing.”
In theory, the game lasts about 45 minutes, but that can change.
“It gets going and it gets really fun and sometimes they don’t want to stop, but everyone’s got places to go and people to see, so we try to keep it between 45 minutes to an hour max,” Richards says.
Residents look forward to the encounter.
“We see a lot more resident involvement when they know the hockey players are coming. It’s like Christmastime,” Richards says. “They just enjoy seeing the young boys come and brighten their day.”
The hockey players enjoy it too.
“I had almost the whole team wanting to come, but we had to cap it at eight,” she says. “We usually cap it at six, but I said, ‘ah, let’s let two more go,’ so it should be a fun event.”
“We kind of keep the balls moving as best we can before they deflate or break.”