Syracuse, N.Y. — The 2022 Syracuse Pond Hockey Classic, a one-day outdoor hockey tournament on scenic Hiawatha Lake in the City of Syracuse, will take place on Saturday, January 29. After a successful inaugural tournament in 2020, the tournament will expand this year to 16 teams competing on six rinks. The 2021 event was canceled due to COVID-19.
“The Syracuse Pond Hockey Classic delivers great hockey competition in a spectacular natural setting. The players are serious about the sport, but more than anything else, they are excited to play the game they love outdoors,” said Tim O’Donnell, tournament director. “We are looking forward to hosting a bigger event that will draw more teams and more fans than our first year.”
The Syracuse Pond Hockey Classic takes place on a 17-acre lake on the western edge of Onondaga Park, a city park in Syracuse’s historic Strathmore neighborhood. It was created by a group of Syracuse natives, including current Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh, who ice skated at the park growing up.
“Hiawatha Lake is an incredible resource in the heart of Syracuse. It is a thrill to be able to share what we enjoyed as kids with people from across the city and the region,” said Mayor Walsh. “After the amazing response we had from the hockey community and the neighborhood in 2020, it was tough to have to take a break last winter. We hope hockey fans and everyone who loves winter activities will come out for this year’s tournament.”
The tournament field includes teams from across the Central New York region. Seven teams are returning from the inaugural event. Two spots remain in the 2022 field. Registration is at https://syracusepondhockeyclassic.com/register.
Round robin play will begin at 9 a.m. Championship round play is scheduled to start around 3:30 p.m. Upper Onondaga Park has space for a large crowd of spectators on the banks of Hiawatha Lake. The event also features music, food and beverages. Attendance is free. The contingency date for unfavorable weather conditions is Feb. 5.
The Syracuse Pond Hockey Classic is sponsored by the Syracuse Crunch, the American Hockey League affiliate of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Partners are the City of Syracuse Department of Parks, Recreation and Youth Programs, the Greater Syracuse Strathmore Neighborhood Association (GSNA) and CNY Central. Portions of the proceeds from the tournament benefit the St. Baldrick’s Foundation/Luke’s Army Pediatric Cancer Research Fund.