Do you hear that metallic sound? That
doesn’t sound like a regular hockey puck. That’s because it’s a puck specially
made for being used by vision-impaired hockey players. The Minnesota Wild
puts on a program to allow vision impaired people to play hockey. One of
the players on the team is a Wildcat. Kira Erickson is a freshman at Eagan
High School and loves going out on the ice.
Blind hockey is all different ages. It’s like regular hockey except the puck is
bigger and makes noise. Most of the people on the team are, all of them are
legally blind which means they have less than 22-hundred vision so they probably
either need enlarged print or read Braille. It takes some amazing people to
run this program. I love to be part of the blind hockey side of things. For me
it’s a huge blessing. I got involved after a few years of working with the
disability side of Minnesota and USA Hockey.
Our daughter used to skate on two prosthetic legs. Knock down barriers that
people are facing and get people on the ice regardless of what circumstances
they’re facing away from the ice and so for me it’s really personal and
professional. I have a grandfather who when I was younger lost his vision and I
would take him fishing and to different events and activities and so for me to
receive a call to help start blind hockey,
couldn’t have been more excited about it. When Kira is out on the ice she always
has a smile and is loving every second of it. It’s kind of like being free
almost because you don’t really have to pick up your feet to walk, you just glide
along the ice.