I sit here overlooking Amelia Park Arena reflecting on the 1st 2 days of the 2015 Kevin J. Major Tournament and think of how proud Albert Ferst would have been of the facility that bears his family’s name. Although this event started due to the tragic death of a vibrant young man, the community support for Kevin Major’s family and the causes they have embraced since his passing, has been amazing.
No event is complete without the countless hours that people volunteer in the planning stages or in manning the tables during the event. From the TEAM MAJOR ladies who organize the raffles, silent auction, swag or food to the HOCKEY CREW who organizes the teams and refs, scorekeeps, and stays on top of the stats, it is truly is a labor of love. Those who volunteer the weekend of the event are vital to the fan experience and it is so appreciated.
The hockey this weekend is AMAZING! It could be the Old Boys Division which brings guys from throughout the Pioneer Valley who either knew Kevin or want to be part of an event that not only awards scholarships to young athletes and teams, but also creates awareness of Sudden Cardiac Arrest in young adults. The Social Division exists in part to the many teams that Kevin played for or against. It is their way of celebrating the kid who loved the game of hockey. The Pro or “A” Division is full of local players who have brought in their friends from all levels of college, junior and professional hockey in attempts to raise the KEVS Cup. It’s great to see our own Women’s Olympian and Westfield native, Kacey Bellamy, make her first appearance at this event. Kacey has really appreciated the pace of the play, which will help her prep for camp. As someone who loves hockey, it is awesome to see our facility hosting the caliber of players that this event hosts, even a few NHLers. The competition is fierce and I can’t wait to see how Championship Sunday unfolds.
Aside from the activities off the ice, it is all about the community coming together and celebrating family, friends, and hockey – the way KEVIN would want it. Today is Community Awareness Day where you can learn Hands-Only CPR (10am-1pm), Opening Ceremonies (noon-1pm), Skill Challenges on our outdoor surface (after noon) , and Ice Cream Social (3pm). There could be equipment being dried out around the campus and you never know who you might meet and around the rink.
Come on down to see what’s it all about! We have games through 11pm. It will make you smile. KEV would love that!