The Hinsdale Central Hockey Club (HCHC) was founded in 1972, by newly arrived Hinsdale resident, F. Regis Kenna. Then, like now, Hinsdale Central’s robust roster of sports did not include hockey. Plans were made to form a club organization typical for the period. An organization independent of the high school. Coaches were hired to hold tryouts and train the athletes.
In another parallel to today, tryouts produced high turnouts, with enough talented players to form both varsity and JV teams. A parent run organization staffed by independent coaches dedicated to player development came to life.
The club is now celebrating its 50th anniversary. Thousands of players have made lifelong friends and enjoyed the defining moments of their high school years on the ice with their teammates. It is an extraordinary program that regularly catapults players to the next level of competition, whether in college or straight to professional hockey.
HCHC remains independent of the school and parent run. The club is remarkably dedicated to player and character development. Members and players are rightfully proud of the club’s long history rich in tradition and reputation. Part of that sterling reputation is built on the club’s support of athletes who need help in covering the cost of playing. Hockey is an expensive sport, with ice time required for both practice and play. Add those expenses to attractive salaries for a full coaching staff and the cost to participate rises.
HCHC is devoted to the idea that players who want to play and who have the skills to play should not be prohibited from playing for financial reasons. In partnership with the Red Devil Athletic Hardship Fund, the club is hosting a fabulous fun evening to raise funds for club athletes.
The Red Devil Athletic Hardship Fund supports hockey players and other sports for which participants and their families shoulder all costs. “Scholarships have been granted to hockey players, gymnasts, dancers, and other athletes,” says Tina Weller, fundraising director for HCHC.
The fund is managed by experienced financial professionals with ties to Hinsdale Central athletics. They are parents, alumni, and in some cases, both. “We are lucky to have exceptional financial stewardship of the fund,” says Weller.
The board of HCHC remains as active and involved as when Kenna established the club five decades ago. This savvy group knows that fundraising must remain a priority. They also know that building community is important. And so, the idea of a fun night out, not in their rink attire, came to life in Fire and Ice, which will be held on Saturday, September 10 around the pool at a private Hinsdale residence. Attendees will enjoy music, drinks, and delicious bites while ensuring that all families can participate in club sports at Hinsdale Central.