Restore Hockey is a nonprofit organization dedicated to making the sport of hockey financially accessible to children through the recycling of hockey equipment, financial donations for new equipment packages, partnerships with businesses and leagues, and the proceeds from their Pro Shop. As hockey is the most expensive of the major North American sports, their goal is to provide the equipment so all children have a “chance to fall in love with the game.”1
As a division of Restore Sports, Inc. which is managed by Michael Spengler, Restore Hockey is led by Scott Crowder. Both Michael and Scott had played collegiate hockey and desired to further the sport and make the game accessible to all children. After graduating in 2009 from University of Massachusetts in Amherst, Massachusetts with a dual degree in Sports Management and Business, Scott wanted to stay connected with the sport of hockey, which led him to create the New England Pond Hockey Classic tournament in Meredith, New Hampshire.2
His hockey tournament was an instant success. However, as Scott contemplated the expense of the equipment,he wanted to do more for the kids who “idolized” hockey players but couldn't afford to play the game themselves. Remembering the piles of used equipment in his basement when he was growing up, he began looking for a way to collect hockey equipment and then give, not sell, it to the children and their families.
Through an internet search, Scott found Michael who was just forming Restore Sports, Inc. They decided to concentrate on the sport they both loved—hockey—and in 2010 Scott joined the Restore Sports team as executive director of the Restore Hockey division.3
Their first endeavors were to set up collection sites for donations of used hockey equipment. All collected equipment was cleaned and sanitized, refurbished, repaired and restored before being given to children and/or organizations. This program, Recycle the Game, also facilitates equipment swaps as another way to recycle used equipment.4
The National Hockey League (NHL) has made Restore Hockey a part of their “NHL Green” Initiative. Scott and Michael were given a booth at the three day NHL Winter Classic held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where they collected 100 pieces of equipment for the Ed Snider Foundation, an organization that uses hockey to bring diverse cultures together and teach life lessons.5
What began with setting up donation sites for collecting used hockey equipment grew to partnering with Pure Hockey to purchase “starter packages” which include skates, pads, a stick, and a uniform. In this program, Give the Game, donations are collected to purchase a starter package to give to a child. At the NHL Winter Classic, Scott and Michael accepted donations and sold rope bracelets made from hockey skate laces to acquire 10 new starter packages. They continue to offer the Restore Hockey Skate Lace Bracelets at their Proshop online.6
Restore Hockey is supported by a dozen partners,7 including Hockey East, FMC Arenas, Bentley University Hockey, and Backyard Hockey. With this support, equipment recycling, gifting programs, and proshop sales, they are helping to “spread the love of the game!” to all children.8
- 1. “Recycle the Game.” Restore Hockey – A Division of Restore Sports, Inc. < http://www.restorehockey.org/page/show/266503-recycle-the-game > 18 Jan. 2012.
- 2. Connelly, Jim. “College Hockey: From old pads to new dreams: Former college players help put kids on the ice.” U.S. College Hockey Online (USCHO). January 17, 2012. < http://www.uscho.com/2012/01/17/from-old-pads-to-new-dreams-former-college-players-help-put-kids-on-the-ice/ > 18 Jan. 2012.
- 3. “Scott Crowder.” Restore Hockey – A Division of Restore Sports, Inc. < http://www.restorehockey.org/page/show/266498-scott-crowder > 18 Jan. 2012.
- 4. Op.cit., “Recycle the Game.”
- 5. Op.cit., Connelly.
- 6. “Pro Shop.” Restore Hockey – A Division of Restore Sports, Inc. < http://www.restorehockey.org/page/show/397357-pro-shop > 18 Jan. 2012.
- 7. “Our Partners.” Restore Hockey – A Division of Restore Sports, Inc. < http://www.restorehockey.org/page/show/261802-partners > 18 Jan. 2012.
- 8. “Give the Game.” Restore Hockey – A Division of Restore Sports, Inc. < http://www.restorehockey.org/page/show/266509-give-the-game > 18 Jan. 2012.