The 2018 Ontario Regionals Old Timers’ Hockey Championship was held in Petawawa from Feb. 4 to 7 at the Silver Dart Arena. Before the games started, there was a traditional puck drop on Sunday evening. From left are Borden Team Captain Master Warrant Officer Guy Thivierge, Kingston Team Captain Warrant Officer Gary Thomson, 4th Canadian Division Support Group (4 CDSG) Formation Sergeant Major Chief Warrant Officer Tom Verner, 4 CDSG Deputy Commander Lieutenant Colonel Richard Raymond, Trenton Team Captain Major Sly Carignan and Petawawa Team Captain Sergeant Shawn Keenan. (Photo by Patricia Leboeuf, Petawawa Post)

Ontario Regional Old Timers’ Hockey hits the ice at Silver Dart

By Patricia Leboeuf

Posted on Thursday February 8, 2018

Teams from Trenton, Borden, Kingston and Petawawa took to the ice to see whose players would take home the win at the 2018 Ontario Regional Old Timers’ Hockey Championship.

The championship started on the evening of Feb. 4, continuing until Wednesday and was played on the ice pads of the Silver Dart Arena. Unlike traditional men’s hockey, the Old Timers’ league is reserved for Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members 40 and older, with a few exceptions.

Though the competition on ice is fierce, many have grown to be friends after playing against each other for so long.

“The guys work hard towards this all year long,” said Garrison Petawawa Personnel Support Programs (PSP) Military Sports Coordinator Rebecca Olstad. “They have that camaraderie and a lot of them have played for years. It is great to see them out together.”

The demographics for the Old Timers’ have also changed to reflect the CAF. It used to be that a participant had to be at least 35 years old to be considered, but that requirement has been changed to 40. Teams are allowed up to 20 players.

It is a great way to have fun, build esprit de corps and keep fit, even when the rivalry on the ice gets a little heated. Some of these players bring decades of experience to the game, said Olstad.

“I think that as we get older, we all get a little better in some areas,” said Olstad. “If it isn’t our technique, it is our strategy or our mental prep going into the sport, or throughout it.”

It is the second year in a row that Petawawa has been invited to host the championship. Olstad has found great support in organizing the event within the military community. Countless former and current serving members offer their volunteer services. She is incredibly grateful for their work in making the championship run smoothly.

“The prep that it takes to get the teams here is unbelievable,” said Olstad. “There is a lot behind the scenes that people don’t see.”

Before the games started, 4th Canadian Division Support Group (4 CDSG) Deputy Commander Lieutenant Colonel Richard Raymond and 4 CDSG Formation Sergeant Major Chief Warrant Officer Tom Verner welcomed the teams. LCol Raymond, who was also playing for the Petawawa Stags, offered his sincerest well wishes to all attendees before dropping the puck at the opening ceremonies.

The winners will go on to play at the Nationals on March 17 - 22 in Borden.

See Next Week’s Post for results.