The Long and Lasting Legacy of the “Harvey Bennett Hockey Clinics”

2023-06-26T13:25:59-04:00June 26th, 2023|

If you were a good young hockey player in Rhode Island in the 1960s or if you dreamed of becoming one, the place to be on Sundays at noon was the Rhode Island Auditorium. That’s when Harvey Bennett’s hockey school took the ice thanks to the generosity of Reds and Auditorium owner, Lou Pieri, and [...]

A Goalie Goal…not only hockey’s, but, perhaps, sport’s rarest feat.

2023-04-17T20:47:12-04:00April 17th, 2023|

It seems like the entire hockey world has watched in wonder, live or on replay, the goal scored by Boston Bruins goaltender Linus Ullmark on February 25, 2023. The rarity of the event was a powerful attraction. In fact, there are even rules established years ago to make it even less apt to happen. But [...]

Norm Rosa: The Maestro of RI Auditorium Ice was the Pulse of the Arena

2023-03-26T13:46:48-04:00March 20th, 2023|

A few decades ago, Norm Rosa's schedule would have looked something like this: R.I. Reds hockey, then a Celtics basketball game, then the comedy team of Martin and Lewis, the rock music of the Grateful Dead, a Rocky Marciano boxing bout, the graceful spins and jumps of the Ice Capades, the rough action of Roller [...]

Don Armstrong: Recollections of a “Rink Rat” during the Golden Age of hockey at the RI Auditorium

2023-02-28T20:41:12-05:00February 28th, 2023|

For five decades, the RI Auditorium at 1111 North Main Street in Providence was the epicenter of RI hockey and home of the revered RI Reds. Throughout the mid 20th century, dozens of youngsters who grew up in proximity to the Arena, as it was called, became known as “rink rats”. Most hung around doing [...]

Hubert C. Milot: His Hockey Dream Changed the Face of RI Sports & Entertainment

2023-01-10T21:30:43-05:00January 10th, 2023|

The story of the birth of the RI Auditorium and that of the Providence (RI) Reds began nearly 100 years ago with local businessman and hockey enthusiast Hubert C. Milot. Born in New Bedford, Hubert’s family moved to Providence, where he was educated at LaSalle Academy. He attended university at St. Mary’s College in Montreal. [...]

How a student in the wrong place at the right time led to the re-birth of PC Friars hockey

2023-02-04T17:15:56-05:00November 9th, 2022|

In 1926, the opening of the new RI Auditorium and the state’s first indoor ice surface heralded a bright new era for RI hockey. Until then, hockey in the Ocean State was played on frozen ponds and rivers, subject to the whims of the weather. Now, indoor artificial ice generated an explosion of interest in [...]

Ahead of his time – Remembering Tommy Woodcock, a Rhode Island Hall of Fame Trainer

2022-10-24T12:01:33-04:00October 24th, 2022|

Former Hope High School hockey great Tommy “Woody” Woodcock was the original medical trainer of the NHL’s St Louis Blues. He worked for the club for its first 16 seasons. A 3-time All-Stater at Hope, he came from a highly-accomplished hockey family that included brothers Eddie and Rollie. Tom enjoyed a brief pro career in [...]

The Eastern Olympics: A stepping stone for today’s USA Hockey Development Program

2022-10-06T09:12:00-04:00October 5th, 2022|

In 1965, following what can only be described as an embarrassing showing by the US hockey team at the 1964 Games, New England took what many believe was one of the first real steps in drawing up the successful blueprint we have today for developing the best talent and teams to compete on the world [...]

The Legend of Jerry Zifcak – The Pride of Burrillville Broncos Hockey

2022-10-05T17:13:35-04:00September 13th, 2022|

John Zifcak was the eldest of Phillip and Frances Zifcak's sons. With ten siblings to help take care of, he didn't have a lot of time for sports, but was athletic enough to join the Rhode Island State Police where he had distinguished career, retiring as a Lieutenant specializing in arson investigation and then being [...]

Ed Zifcak: the adventurous but uncertain journey of Burrillville High School’s greatest hockey hero

2022-07-24T17:45:56-04:00July 23rd, 2022|

Four years before the outbreak of World War I, Phillip Zifcak emigrated from the Slovakian region of the teetering Austro-Hungarian Empire. His wife to be, Frances, followed two years later. They met working in a textile mill in Uxbridge, Massachusetts, married, and soon welcomed the first of 13 children. Phillip and Frances moved to neighboring [...]