OJG and Berkley Youth Hockey Association Form New Partnership
The Oakland Junior Grizzlies organization is proud to announce their partnership with the Berkley Youth Hockey Association starting in the 2015-2016 season.
The Berkley house and travel programs will become part of the Oakland Junior Grizzlies. The dedicated staff that made BYHA will continue to be part of the new organization. The house program will continue to be called the Bears and the “Learn to Skate” program will be named the Cubs and will part of Grizzly organization this fall season.
“The Berkley hockey program is the epitome of community based hockey. It is built into the fabric of the Berkley community. We feel very proud to be part of the Berkley family,” Grizzlies President Terry Bishop said.
“When John Nicolai (BYHA President) educated me about the upcoming Mayors Cup we were anxious to help support and sponsor this traditional competition between the alumni of the two Berkley High Schools,” Bishop said. “It was such a great time watching the game with Mayor O’Dwyer and Councilman Dan Terbrack who are passionate advocates of the hockey program and the association with the Oakland Jr. Grizzlies.”
After the initial meetings, The Grizzlies stepped up and purchased the previous unutilized ice capacity and laid a solid financial future for the Berkley Ice Arena for future generations of Berkley kids to enjoy.
The Grizzlies are committed to growing the game and will use their name recognition and the 11 ex-NHL players and 2 Olympic Medalists who now coach in the organization to help bring kids to the rink to give them a chance to experience playing this great game.
"The Grizzlies will sponsor a number of Try Hockey for Free, Bring Your Friend to the Rink and community advertising to bring kids to the rink," Grizzlies Hockey Director Dwayne Norris said. "The Grizzlies sponsor Trilogy Marketing is committed to this growth project and lowering the cost of hockey,"
The Grizzlies look forward to working with, and supporting the ex-BYHA management team that is the heart and soul of the program. Another component of the merge is it gives the Berkley house program players a migration path to Tier 1 and Tier 2 hockey which had 2 players make the US National Development Team this year as well as having a combined 12 Junior Hockey draft picks between 8 United States Hockey League (USHL) picks and 4 Ontario Hockey League (OHL) picks.
The Grizzlies will be very well rounded in the 2015-2016 season. After the Grizzly/Berkley merge, the Grizzlies will have over 25 teams in House, Tier 2 (A/AA) and Tier 1 (AAA) Hockey, also with the new girls program starting this year as well.