Ice rink owners, young athletes push for governor to reconsider calling off club sports


(WTNH) — While club and other team sports have been put on pause by the governor, Connecticut’s ice rink owners are saying, “Not so fast.”

It is a balancing act between keeping people safe and keeping the economy going, and in this case, the skating community is saying we can do both. So they are reaching out to Governor Ned Lamont

Young boys and girls across the state sent letters and signed pucks with the “Let me play” slogan to the governor’s office yesterday. Even if it means only being able to practice and not play games. The Milford Ice Pavilion is just one of more than 20 rinks across the country owned by Maryland-based Black Bear sports group.

CEO Murry Gunty said the players’ equipment, rink size and outside air exchange combine to create a safe environment.

“We’ve tried to educate legislators about the fact that we have filters in our buildings. No different than what you’d see in an airline. We have a dehumidification system. It sucks in air from the outside. It heats it up, it kills the covid particles. Kills everything else, it recirculates the air all the time,” Murry Gunty, Owner Milford Ice Pavilion.

“We wanted to really emphasize what hockey means to us, why we shouldn’t have it taken away from us,” Charlie Bellissimo, Darien Youth Hockey.

“And there will probably be more strict guidelines we can follow if we do get a second chance at a season. But, if it means I would get a season then I would be happy to follow them,” Maggie Bellissimo.

Gunty said he is not approaching this from a “We have to save jobs and make money” standpoint. His question for the governor – why is Connecticut the only state on the east coast that does not allow practice or games.

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