CHICAGO, IL – When Garret Sparks was seven years old, his parents, Mike and Lisa, decided it seemed like the right time to introduce him to hockey.
They signed up Garret for the Scooters program at the Elmhurst YMCA – the same outdoor rink where Mike started playing in fourth grade and developed into a goaltender. Scooters, a program that continues to thrive today, encourages parents to get on the ice with their children while teaching the basics of skating and hockey.
“We had a lot of fun,” Mike said.
For the final session, the Scooters coaches wanted to hold a scrimmage to show off everyone’s progress. Just one problem: Every kid was a skater. Goaltending wasn’t part of the program.
With the parents off the ice and watching from the other side of the glass, a coach asked for two kids to volunteer to play goalie. Nobody moved a muscle. So he asked again.