In Mississauga, hockey is one of the most popular sports with players being able to sign up from as young as 4 years old to take to the ice and a total of 5,669 players and 369 teams competing in the Mississauga Hockey League (MHL) . There are a total of 8 associations that a player can choose from and each player’s choice will normally depend on the location of the home and training venue, so be sure to check where your nearest association is before signing up. However, each association also has their own training times and prices so this may also be a factor you wish to consider before registering your child at the local team. You can begin to register from the 1st May each year, for the competitive season which begins in the fall, while most game days are Saturdays for 7-15 age range; there is also the possibility of games taking place on a Sunday or a week night. Here is a quick rundown on each association that competes in the MHL.
Applewood Coyotes – The Coyotes play their home games at either the Chic Murray or Tomken Arenas, both of which are located just a handful of streets away from the Toronto Pearson Airport. The fees are in the region of $400-$700 a year depending on your child’s age which is similar to most of the other associations out there. A number of their players have gone on to play professional hockey such as Tom McCarthy played Novice at Dixie and went on to play for the Minnesota North Stars. Visit Applewood Hockey’s website at – www.applewoodhockey.on.ca for more information.
Clarkson Hurricanes – The Hurricanes are one of the most successful teams in the city, winning four or 5 of the leagues during the regular season and going on to clinch more victories in the playoffs. The team plays at the Clarkson Community Centre and there are a number of other things for parents to do while there children are practicing or playing hockey and facilities include a pool, basketball court and library. There tyke teams had over 102 participants showing how popular the hurricanes are with the youngest hockey players. The fees are typical ranging from $430-$700, however the gold and A teams are subject to a fee in the region of $1000 for the season, due to the increased costs for the league of playing the most competitive and entertaining hockey. The Hurricanes website is – http://www.clarksonhockey.ca/ where you can find more information about their latest successes.
Cooksville Phantoms – The Phantoms are one of the oldest teams in the league, their origins date back as far as 1945 before the Mississauga Hockey League was even introduced when they would field teams in the Toronto league. They have a Skills Development Program which offers those with a physical or mental disability the chance to take to the ice from anywhere from the age of 5 upwards and are always looking for new members to join in. The Phantoms have an active social aspect to their play with regular meals, meetups and other social gatherings to allow the children to build their friendships off the ice, not just on it. They have a number of ex-players who have made it into the M.H.L hall of fame and have a cash back offer if your 4-6 year old brings down a buddy, with $50 back for every buddy brought down to the rink (up to 3 buddies). The fees are the cheapest for the Tykes as well but are otherwise in the region of $600-$700. There website has all of the contact details for each team coach – http://www.cooksvillephantoms.com/
Credit Valley Wolves – The Wolves play their home games at the Hershey Centre in the center of Mississauga. The team was only formed in 2005 when the Malton Ice Bears were renamed the Credit Valley Wolves. The Wolves have 3 objectives – “To provide a fun and safe opportunity for children in Mississauga ages 4 to 19 years old to participate in hockey. To foster the development of hockey and life skills in a positive environment that encourages teamwork, sportsmanship and fair play. To build lasting memories of teammates, friends and accomplishments. The development of our players and coaches is fundamental in achieving these objectives. Our motto embodies our spirit, HOCKEY… for fun, fitness & friendship”. These objectives helped to build the strong Wolves teams that play today and they have already built a strong reputation for producing good teams. This has also helped them to attract some generous sponsorship deals allowing the association to offer some of the cheapest fees in the league with most of their fees being below $400. There most recent success has been their Minor Bantam A team who won the gold medal in their division and a number of tournaments throughout the year. To find more information on how to join, visit their website – http://creditvalleywolves.com
Erindale Spitfires – Erindale is the largest of the 8 associations, fielding the largest number of players, coaches and managers and will celebrate its 70th anniversary during the 2015-2016 season. Formed in 1946 after their founder, Wally Oughtred had just finished his time in the Royal Canadian Air Force where he was a member of the air force hockey team. The famous spitfire was incorporated into their logo in honor of their founder. They play at the Erin Mills Arena to the South West of the cente of Mississauga and have regular practices due to the volume of players that they have. The spitfires field teams at all levels of each age group, meaning often age groups can be full when enquiring, particularly the older age groups, therefore it is best to register your child when they are young, to be sure they’ll find a place in one of the teams. Fees are similar to other teams in the league and they have a very informative parents section on their website at – http://erindalehockey.com/
Lorne Park Ojibwa – For those of you who don’t know, the Ojibwa were one of a large group of Native Americans who originally congregated around Lake Superior and were the first of agree treaties to allow European settlers into their areas. The team is a founding member of the MHL its history dates back over 70 years. This association is one of the only ones to allow players as young as 3 years old to begin learning the game and have a number of different ability levels at the youngest age groups to allow players to find their level. Website – http://www.lpha.ca/
Meadowvale Hawks and Mohawks – This team has grown rapidly since its foundation in 1976 and is one of the largest associations in the league, fielding over 1400 players and now has one of the strongest reputations in the league for sending players on to the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) one of the major junior leagues in the country. Like most other associations, their ice puppy scheme for 4-6 year olds is there most well-advertised and it is evident that once players join a club in their infancy then they must have a strong bond with that club and tend to reward them with continued service in their later years. The focus of most of these schemes is fun and enjoyment rather than performance driven coaching which can takeover if players make it into the A teams of any of the 8 associations. Registration has already begun for the 2015/2016 season and it is therefore vital, if your child is interested in playing that you sign them up, before places run out. Their website has more information about the teams and prices and can be found at – http://meadowvalehockey.com/
Port Credit Storm – The last association in the MHL but by no means the worst, in fact they were one of the most successful associations during the 2014/15 season with their teams winning gold in the entire Juvenile category leagues and winning the most gold placed teams out of any association in the league, with 4/11 of the A divisions being won by a Port Credit Storm team. To register at age 4 skating ability is required however from age 5 upward, no prior skating ability is required to sign up for the teams. Their home games are played at the Port Credit or Huron Park Arenas which as their name suggests are located on the banks of Lake Ontario, a wonderful setting for the sport. Registration fees are on the cheaper side and range from $450-$650 and with over 1000 players taking to the ice for Port Credit Storm, be sure to sign up as soon as possible to avoid being disappointed when there is no longer space in your age group. The latest team photographs and other useful information can be found on their website at – http://www.portcredithockey.com/