— By Kristi Patton —
It was an inspiring couple of days of hockey, friendship and fun at the third annual Grindstone Award Foundation Charity Weekend that will translate into 50 young female hockey players that face financial barriers getting an opportunity to play hockey.
The Grindstone Award Foundation board of directors set a goal to be able to continue to grow the number of grants they hand out year-over-year, with a target of 50 for 2019. However, some bumps along the way had them worried that it might not happen.
“It’s been a turbulent year for women’s hockey and that directly affected us. When the Canadian Women’s Hockey League announced they were folding, we knew we wouldn’t be seeing the $8,000 that was supposed to be coming to us from the CWHL fundraising events that Grindstone held in conjunction with those teams during the season,” said Danielle Grundy, president and co-founder of Grindstone. “We knew our signature charity event would have to be extra special this year and having Olympian Natalie Spooner made it just that.”
“There were so many amazing moments from the start right up until the last moments as we were cleaning up and a family from Vernon were so inspired by the weekend that they handed me a $500 cheque as a donation.”
–Danielle Grundy, Grindstone Award Foundation Co-founder
In addition to the annual Women’s Hockey Tournament and Girls Rock the Rink events, Grindstone added a new event this year, Spoon Full of Dreams, an inspirational talk given by Natalie Spooner. The weekend drew over 260 players and with their help, Grindstone raised $25,241.57.
“I can’t even begin to explain how thankful Grindstone is to everyone who participated, sponsored, donated and volunteered their time over the three days. There were so many amazing moments from the start right up until the last moments as we were cleaning up and a family from Vernon were so inspired by the weekend that they handed me a $500 cheque as a donation,” said Grundy.
Spooner hit the ice along with fellow ex-CWHLers Hanna Bunton and Hannah Miller, and 18 other guest coaches with NCAA and university experience, to teach young female hockey players of all ages and abilities new skills. As well, she suited up for an all-star game that featured some of the ‘rec league’ players that were participating in the tournament, giving them the thrill of skating with an Olympian.
“Some girls had lots of hockey experience and some it was their first time playing hockey. It was an amazing weekend for women’s hockey,” said Spooner.
Grindstone also recently received a $6,000 donation from Canadian national women’s team player Laura Stacey. The money was raised at her annual Sticks In For Charity Road Hockey Tournament, which was held in Toronto last month.
THANK YOU TO OUR EVENT SPONSORS
Platinum Level Sponsors
- DKL Financial (Dale Lamb)
- DunnEnzies Pizza Co. (Karyn Mackenzie/Deb Dunnigan)
- Kelowna Minor Hockey
- Lifemark Health (Kristine Heckman)
Silver Level Sponsors
Bronze Level Sponsors
Silent Auction Contributors
- … and a HUGE THANK YOU to all of the individuals and other businesses that contributed to the success of our event!!!
Bonus Footage: Spooner Git Up!
To thank those of you who read this far, here’s a little treat for you!: