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AHAI Advisory on COVID-19 and Youth Hockey November 19, 2020

As of Friday, November 20th, the State of Illinois has issued new guidance concerning COVID mitigations. We realize that this is a disappointment to the hockey community. It is hard to deny the acceleration of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths throughout the state and country. We know the hockey community has done its best to stay safe at the rinks.

Currently, the State of Illinois has released the Tier 3 Resurgence Mitigations.

https://covid19-illinoisgov.cs32.force.com/coronavirus/s/restore-illinois-mitigation-plan

The mitigations, as stated in the above document, impact AHAI and its member affiliates regarding AHAI sanctioned events.

Organized group recreational activities (sports, indoor sports and activity facilities, etc.)

  • Pause all indoor group sporting and recreational activities including youth and adult recreational sports, individual training may remain (with facility reservation)
  • Includes park districts and travel leagues
  • Outdoor sports and recreation allowed
  • Participant groups and practices outdoors limited to 10 persons or less with social distancing
  • Face coverings required for all activities at all times
  • Locker rooms should be closed

During this pause, all AHAI sanctioned activity will be postponed until additional updates are available.

AHAI Affiliate Organizations and leagues are accountable to governmental authorities and AHAI expects all its members to strictly adhere to federal, state and local government and departments of health policies, including local rink rules, for best practices on COVID-19 health and prevention. These policies include, but are not limited to, IDPH travel policy, the All Sports Policy, Youth Sports Guidance, and Indoor/Outdoor Recreation Facilities Guidance from the State of Illinois and Tier 3 Resurgence Mitigations. AHAI realizes that the policies can (and may very well) change at some point in the future. Each AHAI Affiliate Organization is responsible for awareness of the most current policies.

As has been previously communicated, the issuance of a USAH team roster does NOT permit an AHAI/USA Hockey rostered team to participate in any games or scrimmages in the State of Illinois nor does it permit an AHAI sanctioned league to conduct games or scrimmages during this Tier 3 Resurgence Mitigation. AHAI will not sanction any in-state games or tournaments at this time.

If AHAI is made aware of any affiliate violating the current state policies surrounding COVID, AHAI will refer that complaint to IDPH for follow-up.

A violation of AHAI rules, including all in-state Illinois Game play, regulations, bylaws, policies or procedures may be referred to the appropriate disciplinary AHAI committee for further action. A determination by the AHAI committee that an organization, team or league violated any AHAI rule, regulation, bylaw, policy or procedure may result in disciplinary measures including, but not limited to, coaching suspension, team staff suspension, decertification of a team or league, and elimination of eligibility to participate in the AHAI State Tournament.

AHAI does not recommend Affiliate Associations or teams travel outside the state of Illinois.

If teams or participants travel out of Illinois, they would be subject to any applicable State of Illinois quarantine requirements and may be subject to penalties by the State of Illinois if it determines that such travel violated the current health regulations. At this time, AHAI does not intend to take disciplinary action for participating in sanctioned activities in another Affiliate, if that Affiliate is open for play as determined by said Affiliate's governmental agency, unless the State of Illinois issues a clearer directive on the subject.

Each AHAI Affiliate should prepare its own plan, in conjunction with its local rinks, for returning players to the ice. AHAI does not operate ice rinks or affiliates nor does it determine when, and how, it is appropriate to return to the rinks. AHAI has no role in determining such actions.

Working collaboratively, and in compliance with the policies discussed above, may increase the opportunity to return to the ice safely and as soon as safely possible. Conversely, creating an environment which could lead to further exposure and incidence of COVID-19 infection may move the community further back from its intended goals. We are all in this together!

AHAI will release additional information as it becomes available. Stay well.

AHAI Board of Directors


Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame Announces 16th Class of Inductees!

The Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame announces the 16th class of inductees into its Hall of Fame. The honored inductees this year are:

 

PLAYERS CATEGORY
Kendall Coyne-Schofield
Grant Mulvey

COACHES CATEGORY
Bob Graham
Michael Svac

BUILDERS CATEGORY
Paul Jakubowski
Jim McKeague
JJ O'Connor

REFEREE CATEGORY
Larry Swakon
D. Ray Tucker

Illinois hockey has a very long and rich hockey history, due in large part, to the foundation laid down by these inductees. Their tireless dedication in making sure every individual who had a desire to participate in this great sport has had the opportunity to do so.

Depending on the situation involving the COVID-19 pandemic, we are tentatively planning that the IHHF Induction Dinner will be held in their honour on Sunday, January 31, 2021, at the Belvedere Banquet Hall located at 1170 West Devon Avenue in Elk Grove Village beginning at 5:00 pm. We will be making a final decision on whether or not the induction ceremonies will be held on January 31, 2021 by December 1, 2020. (If the Induction Ceremonies can not be held this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we will be inducting this 16th class into the Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame on Sunday, January 30, 2022 - we will let everyone know by December 1, 2020).

Tickets are available after December 1st by contacting Norm Spiegel at 847/269-2922 or e-mail Norm at jacole@comcast.net.

Joining in honoring this special group of inductees will be several of the past inductees into the Hall of Fame. This year's inductees, and all of the past inductees have demonstrated, through their actions over the years, their personal commitment in making a difference in the lives of thousands of Illinois youth and the Illinois hockey community.

The mission statement of the Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame is as follows:

"To honor the excellence of those individuals who, through their exceptional endeavors both on and off the ice, have contributed in an extraordinary way to enhance the sport and image of hockey in Illinois."

On behalf of everyone involved in the game of hockey, we admire and thank each of the inductees into the Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame class of 2020. They truly are in a class of their own.


KEVIN BOLGER TO TAKE HELM AS AHAI PRESIDENT

We are pleased to announce that Kevin Bolger will serve as President of the Amateur Hockey Association of Illinois, Inc. Kevin's vast experience in the Illinois hockey community will serve our membership well during these unique and trying times.
 
Kevin began coaching in the House League at Winnetka 27 years ago. He progressed through the Winnetka Program serving on the Board of Directors as Wishbone Tournament Director, Director of Development, Legal Consultant, Director of Personnel, Coaches Selection Committee, All Star Committee, Vice President and President. 
 
From 2004 to 2011 he served on the Loyola Academy Hockey Board holding positions as Registrar, Chairman of R&E, Coaches Selections Committee and Secretary. In 2003 Kevin was appointed to the AHAI Board of Directors to fill the vacancy of Sarah Teuting. 
 
Prior to taking the helm as President, Kevin most recently served AHAI as Vice President of Hockey Operations and Chairman of the Suspension & Review Committee. Kevin has also served on the Tier II, Showcase, Screening and Appeals Committees. 
 
Additionally, Kevin's experience as a Criminal Defense Attorney, former Cook County Assistant State's Attorney and Chicago Police Officer provides him with the broad experience necessary to fulfill the role of AHAI President and achieve the goals of Illinois Hockey. 
 
Kevin was inducted into the Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame in 2018 for his myriad contributions and exceptional dedication to hockey in Illinois.
 
"There are many ways we can improve this great game and grow our sport in the coming years. I look forward to serving the Illinois hockey community and representing your interests in the State of Illinois." - Kevin Bolger, AHAI President



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