NH Pond Hockey Classic Canceled By Poor Playing Surface
The warm temperatures and mixed precipitation that came with the end of the week snow was enough to cancel this year's annual Pond Hockey Classic on Lake Winnipesaukee.
The rinks were fully set up before the rain, sleet, and snow fell on Thursday. When crews went out on Friday to prep the surface on 26 rinks, the snow piles, slush, water pockets, cracks, frozen boards, and brackets became too much to groom, according to to the tournament commissioner.
The weight of the snow piles caused the ice to crack and bend and water to bubble through, creating an unplayable surface.
Over 275 teams would have played 500+ games Friday through Sunday. Friday's games had already been canceled, and the rest of the tournament was canceled on Saturday.
"The sinking ice at the ends of many rinks required us to disassemble boards and brackets as the ice sank and the water rose. As our crews worked well into the night, the compromised ice became unsafe for us and our machinery to continue to remove snow in many areas of the venue. The water and slush on the surface began to freeze as the temps dropped, creating a surface that is unplayable," the commissioner wrote.
While the games were canceled, the tournament still had food available and the Labatt Blue Zone had live music.