Tampa Bound!

by Joe Bertaccini

So here we go….can you believe it?!?  The 2018 TORHS 2Hot4Ice Nationals are upon us.  It seems like yesterday we were packing up our gear from the 2017 event...

While I think all players, coaches, and parents would agree this is the best time of year, for us Tournament Directors, it is no different!  There is so much work that goes on behind the scenes throughout the year to make this event the success it is.  It truly will be gratifying when it all comes together over the next 13 days. Memories that will last a lifetime will be born, and I cannot wait to be a part of it.

To say we are excited with our results this year would be an understatement.  It all started in the summer of 2012.  Ron and I got together in St. Louis and having not had much of a relationship prior to that meeting, we immediately hit it off, and TORHS 2Hot4Ice was born.  At the time, I can honestly say I didn’t know what to expect, but many years later, it is a decision I am glad we both made.  We have had many successful events since our inaugural events of 2013, but THIS event, THIS year, really epitomizes our vision on that summer afternoon in 2012. Participation from ALL markets Coast to Coast, Canada, and nearly 30 teams from 3 different countries in South America!  It has always been our goal to run an all-encompassing event representing as many markets we can.  THIS year’s event does exactly that.  Many of the most prominent organizations in the sport will be represented in some form or fashion!  I would like to take this opportunity to thank all teams for their commitment to not only TORHS 2Hot4Ice, but continuing your constant development of the players, allowing us the opportunity to run this kind of event!

I would also like to thank our sponsors…the companies who stand by our side, and offer so much support throughout the year.  TOUR Hockey, Black Biscuit, Bardown Creative, Labeda, PHAT TAPE, BladeTape, and SinBin Threads.  Many of them will be in the house so please take the time, visit their booths, and see what they have going on.  You will not be disappointed!

The folks at Pasco County…without your support, there is no way this event is taking place in Wesley Chapel and at one of the nicest buildings in the country, Florida Hospital Center Ice! Thank you for your continued support, and for being such an amazing partner.  Consuelo will be in the house throughout the event at various times, so if you see her, PLEASE be sure to thank her!

Our staff…the best in the industry hands down!  These guys and gals give so much.  Whether a tournament director, a referee, or a scorekeeper, their passion for the game is second to none.  They deal with so much, yet not only do they have the ability to manage it, but they always do it in a professional manner with an eye on our values as a company.  I could never thank them enough! 

Regarding our staff, I would be remiss not to mention how much we will be missing our very own John Gelement.  As many of you know, John made a decision to step away from the day-to-day management side of things and will not be in Wesley Chapel this year.  John has been involved with TORHS for nearly 2 decades, and often times was responsible for so many different aspects of our event.  You cannot ever replace a John Gelement, and we are forever thankful for his years of service.  We wish John, his wife Gina, and his kids Gavin and Gianna nothing but the best in whatever the future holds.  You will always have a home with us!  By the way, if you have not already, John wrote a blog that is a must-read.  You can view here, http://www.torhs2hot4ice.com/news/a-note-from-john-gelement

I am about to touch down in Tampa so I going to cut this short, but I would like to express my appreciation to every player, parent, coach, and team manager who will be attending this year’s event.  It means more to me than I could ever express that you chose to spend part of your summer with us in Wesley Chapel.  My commitment to you is that our staff and I will do our very best to make this an unforgettable experience.  I have 1 simple request for you.  Have fun!  Not everyone will have the opportunity to walk away a champion, but memories that will last a lifetime will undoubtedly be born for each of you. Embrace the friendships and the company you will have, and always respect your opposition, referees, and tournament officials.  If you do that, no matter the results, I promise you will have the time of your life!

See you at the rink…