About The Program
This is the 48th year that the Garfield Heights Muny Hockey program has been in existence. The program has grown tremendously since 1968, and it continues to thrive and improve.
The earliest available records date to 1971. There were 73 boys skating in the program, and nine coaches. Practice pucks were in short supply, the nets were not in good condition, there was no scoreboard, or player benches. The rink was not enclosed, and the parents asked the city to buy tarps or windscreens to keep out the wind. It was suggested that Garfield Heights High School be asked to build a rink on its property, since hockey would be a very big thing is a few years.
An organizational meeting of the proposed Garfield Heights Hockey Booster Club was held on November 11, 1971. Bob Leeson, head coach, opened the meeting, and Dan Kostel, Recreation Center Director, was there to support the organization of the club. Acting president was Buddy Sawchik, Elaine Howe, secretary, and Wayne King, treasurer. It was agreed that by-laws be adopted and officers elected before the club continued to exist.
Early meetings were held in private homes, with an average attendance of 20-25 members. The meetings were then moved to the basement of Ceo’s Restaurant, which had a side door.
Jersey’s were purchased for the Bantams at a cost of $400, and hockey emblems were purchased for $300. The Booster Club supported the high school hockey team until 1973, when it became a state sanctioned sport with the Ohio High School Athletic Association. The club received gate receipts from high school hockey games as part of its income. The checking account had a balance of $707.54 on November 29, 1971.
Garfield Heights players would travel to Canada, and the Canadians would come to Garfield Heights for CanAm games. The club would make travel arrangements and hotel reservations. It asked parents to pay $5.00 each for the party.
Even though forty eight years have passed, it seems we have much in common with the founding members. They struggled with what fund-raisers to do, how to keep new jerseys clean and in good shape, and how to get enough ice time. They also knew how to party and have fun at tournaments!
Enjoy this year and know that you are carrying on a great Bulldog tradition.