Contributed by MaLane Harbour
2017 Last Frontier Pond Hockey Classic Tournament
March 10-12, 2017
The Scotty Gomez Foundation
Burkeshore Marina, Big Lake
In March of 2017, The Scotty Gomez Foundation (TSGF) is bringing The Last Frontier Pond Hockey Classic Tournament to the Mat-Su Valley. With an expectation of 100 teams from around the state and the country, this will not only be a great time but also a great opportunity for the Valley.
Carlos Gomez, the director of TSGF has dedicated his life to helping children experience the game, starting with his own son and now retired NHL player, Scotty Gomez.
As a four-year old boy, Scotty Gomez received his first hockey equipment on loan from the Boys & Girls Club. Even with that help, hockey proved to be an expensive sport that was out of the Gomez’s budget. Carlos became a fundraiser in the 1980’s - fundraising for his son and the teams he played on.
Carlos’ fundraising picked back up a few years after his son made it to the NHL. He remembered what it meant to him to have that loner equipment form the Boys & Girls Club, and he began to raise funds for other children who may not have otherwise been given the opportunity to play.
Funds for the organization have been raised through wine tastings, corporate sponsorships, partnerships with the Alaska Aces, golf tournaments and much more! It wasn’t until 2015 that the pond tournament was created. After two years in Anchorage, the event already started looking for a new home that could accommodate the number of teams and attendees that come out for this three days of hockey and fun.
While it was located at Goose Lake, it became Anchorage’s largest hockey event. Carlos knew that in order to grow the tournament, he had to move to another location. During the 2016 event, Carlos committed to moving the following year to Big Lake. With 13 rinks, a goal of 100 teams, a family rink, 60’x140’ warming tent, food, drinks, a concert and of course, hockey, it has now been moved to the Burkeshore Marina for the 3rd Annual Event on March 10th, 11th and 12th.
Not a hockey player? No problem. With music, food and the outdoors, there is guaranteed fun for the entire family. Besides hockey, the three days of events includes music, food and even a crowd favorite, H3, playing on Saturday night. The concert is open to the community at no charge, to thank the Valley for all of the support this year.
The goal is to not only raise money for TSGF, but to also give back to local businesses and organizations.
For more information visit www.akpond.com.