[music playing] JOSIE O’GARA: So this
weekend, the temperatures have finally dropped
enough for us to begin what we call
the 100 hour flood. Parents volunteer and sign up
for shifts around the clock to put down water,
and let it freeze so that we can build up
a great base layer of ice for this season of hockey. Beginning today and then
throughout the weekend, we’ll just be flooding
around the clock. CASEY GILLMAN: My
name is Casey Gillman. We are here flooding at
Congdon Park Hockey making ice for the kids to play on. Overall, it went pretty well. We put a lot of water down,
and I can hear it freezing now. There’s lots of
volunteer hours going on, and there’s a lot of
water being put down. And it starts off slow, but
once it starts building up, it comes together nicely. And it’s impressive how
fast it actually comes. Coming here and doing
what I’m doing now as a father instead of a kid
out here playing on the ice, I get a lot bigger respect
for what my dad did, you know. You see all the
work that actually goes into it just so we can
go out and play as kids. ERIC GUSTAFSON: My
name is Eric Gustafson, and we are at the
Glen Avon hockey rink. Right now, we are working
on getting our ice down for the season. We’ve got a good culture going
on here where people understand about doing the work
and getting things done– keep the costs down. JOSIE O’GARA: There’s something
about the hockey culture here in Duluth that seems
different than other places that we’ve lived. This definitely feels
like more of a community. It’s more accessible to a
lot of different people. Our winters are obviously
pretty long up here, so I always say that
if you don’t find a way to sport your way
through the winter, you might end up being
pretty miserable. So it’s nice what
we– you know, can find an activity where
the kids can be active outside, and enjoy the
winter, and enjoy themselves, and their friendships. And at the same time,
be part of a team. CASEY GILLMAN: I
have three sons. My oldest is playing now
and, I did it growing up. I grew up in the Duluth area
playing on the same rinks and my dad did it. It’s kind of a way
of life for us, and it puts a smile on my kid’s
face and every other kid’s face out there. So that’s why we
do it, for kids. ERIC GUSTAFSON: Well, the
main thing for the kids is that it’s fun. It’s playing a sport,
it’s getting outside, making friends, and having fun. You know, if any of them turn
into good hockey players, that’s just a bonus, but that’s
not the important part of it. It’s northern Minnesota, hockey
is a big thing around here. Yeah, it’s a good way to spend
your winter, in my opinion, it beats sitting inside. CASEY GILLMAN: I’m
one of many, many of the parents in the
Duluth Hockey Association that grew up here. So every time I go
to another rink, there’s 10 or 15 more
faces that I haven’t seen for 20 years and it’s fun. You know, you get out
here on a good night, and you get tons of kids playing
around and having a good time. The family is here,
everybody loves it. We love hockey here in Duluth. That’s kind of the long and
short of it right there. DANA KAZEL: I think
there’s just never been a time he didn’t want to play. My husband, he played hockey. So I think A.J. had his
first pair of skates when he was probably
like 3 and a 1/2, and he started
officially playing hockey and I’m in sixth grade. I remember, like, maybe
around the first year– because the first time
was kind of tough. I remember I’d fall the
first step on the ice, but since there, it
was all really fun. DANA KAZEL: He dreams of that. He would love to play for the
Bulldogs someday, and I mean, hockey is his life. This time of year, anyway. ALEX KAZEL: It’s
just fun to play. It’s a game that
will keep you busy. It’s kind of like a hobby. It’s just, I want to
do it all the time. DANA KAZEL: Here in
Esko in particular, I’ve been with the Esko Hockey
Association for a few years now. I’m currently the Esko
Hockey Association President of the Board. We’ve been growing every year. We’re a small town of Esko. We’ve been growing, and now
we have almost 70 kids strong. And last year alone,
we had a 30% increase. So we’ve got five mite 1
teams and two mite 2 teams, and we look forward
to growing every year. DANA KAZEL: The parents
are the ones that are out here when
it’s 10 below zero and they’re flooding the rinks. The moms are committing
two, three, four nights during the season when
they’re working concessions. I mean, it’s all
volunteer, you know, you’ve got the
tournaments– and, I mean, it’s a huge, huge
volunteer commitment. KEITH HALVORSON:
It’s a lot of work. this range of ages of
kids who are skating and how well they
play with each other. And I tell him now, as one
of the older kids, just remember how good
they were to you, and you make sure you’re that
good to the younger kids. And just letting them
get involved and play– it’s something special. KEITH HALVORSON: It’s really
the beauty of rat rink hockey– is you get little kids,
you get older kids, and every kid is able
to play with children of different skill levels. And that’s where
they grow, they’re challenged in some
times, and then they get to help
out the little kids. And it’s got a lot of learning
benefits for the kid’s skill development. You know, guys l with kids ranging
from ages 5 up to 13, and that really helps
all the kids grow. In some moments,
they’re a teacher. In other moments,
they’re the student. INTERVIEWER: Your dad is
one of your coaches too, they’re, for the most
part, playing indoors. But last year, they
got to play in a couple of outdoor tournaments. And I just had to laugh because
at the ripe old age of 10, he’s like, oh, this brings
back so many good memories to be skating outside. ALEX KAZEL: You get to
bond with your friends. It’ll build relationships,
it’s just really fun to play. DANA KAZEL: There’s something
magical about outdoor hockey. like in the baseball
movie, where there’s an ideal little baseball
field in the middle of nowhere. Well, here we have
an ideal hockey rink that’s iconic in so many ways. Well, my name is
Patrick Francisco. I grew up in the
west side of Duluth, went to Denfeld High School,
played hockey at UMD, love this community,
love Duluth. I’m a volunteer in a
Heritage Center project. There were, first of
all, lots of folks involved in this effort. You know, the impetus was the
burning down of the Peterson Arena near Wheeler field, and
then the idea just kind of grew. It grew into a bigger concept. A concept of historic renovation
of these historic buildings here at the Essentia Health
Duluth Heritage Sports Center. It grew into
economic development and broadening our mission
that went beyond hockey and grew to the
Boys and Girls Club, and sports camps, and so forth. JERRY FRYBERGER: It was a
totally volunteer effort that put this thing together. And what we did– wanted to do–
is not only have an ice sheet for the kids to skate on– the high school
teams to skate on– but we wanted to celebrate the
heritage of hockey in Duluth. I’m Jerry Fryberger, and
I was introduced to hockey in about 1943. It’s a first class facility. It’s got a lot of warmth,
and of course, the heritage adds tremendous to it. PATRICK FRANCISCO: You put
500, 600 people in here– 1,000 people in here– it’s a raucous environment,
and the kids have a lot of fun, and the players enjoy it. The community likes it, and it’s
turning out the way we hoped. JERRY FRYBERGER: Well,
grandmothers and grandfathers come in here and see
themselves in these pictures, and they see their
grandchildren now out here. It’s pretty special. PATRICK FRANCISCO: We
want to intentionally show intergenerational connectedness. So a kid today– a young kid, a high school kid– understand that people
came before them to help pave the way
so that they can have the things that they enjoy. In my lifetime, which
is quite a few years, I don’t remember a
project like this being done without tax dollars. So it’s pretty remarkable,
and the community needs to be proud of
themselves because it was a collaborative effort. JERRY FRYBERGER: My dad was
in the iron ore business. So during the Depression,
there was no money to have a youth hockey program,
and then during the war, there was nobody to coach. So he, and Ray Petersen,
and Rip Williams were the ones who said, let’s
get these kids back on the ice. And so they built rinks,
you know, outside rinks. That’s all we had. My mother was very much involved
after my f across there with
the Fryberger family, and the Williams family
from the central Hillside, and the Peterson family from
the west side of Duluth. That brings this
community together. This is a total Duluth
community center, and it’s for the
whole community. JERRY FRYBERGER:
My father would not recognize the quality of
play and neither would Ray Peterson or Rip Williams. It’s just been fantastic. PATRICK FRANCISCO: You come
and look at our college wall, and you see all these
kids who took the youth hockey to pursue education. And we have hundreds
of those kids that played on some pond or rink
in Duluth that went on to wear a jersey from some college. So when you come
through here and you look at all of these Olympic and
pro athletes, and Hobey Baker winners, and whatever other
Duluth kids, hopefully, that inspires kids. JERRY FRYBERGER: We focus so
much at the professional level now, but that isn’t the
real value of hockey. The value is teamwork,
sportsmanship, and rules. And they build that enthusiasm
and discipline to get in shape, go out there and be
part of the team, contribute to the
part of the team, and be a wonderful teammate
and encourage your teammates. are starting younger now. We have a couple of U10
teams and some U12 teams, and when we first
started, we were walking through the junior high
and senior high halls trying to get people to play hockey. SKYLAR GUNDERSON:
This year, we’re, like, a lot deeper of a team
than we have been in the past. I started playing on the team
when I was in eighth grade, but that doesn’t happen anymore. Our youngest person
on the team now is a sophomore in high school. So it shows how much
it’s come in the last, like, five years that
I’ve been on the team. GLEN GILDERMAN: Teams
started in 1998, about hockey– and I was in kindergarten,
and I didn’t really think anything of it. And then I came home
and I’m like, Mom, Dad, I want to play hockey. And they’re like, no you don’t. And I’m like, yeah I do. And so they let me try it, and
I’ve been playing ever since. ABBY HALVERSON: Well,
used to live in Babbitt, so up on the range, and my
brothers and sister played. And I never wanted to play– I used to figure skate– and then one day, my mom and
dad just put me on the ice and I loved it. BRI STAFNE: My dad loves hockey. My mom was a little torn that
I was giving up gymnastics because I’m the only
girl in the family, so that was, like,
the girly sport. But both my parents
are super supportive and have been all the way up. GLEN GILDERMAN: It’s a
different brand of hockey, you know, there’s no checking,
there’s a lot of contact. If you watched a game,
you’d be surprised, but the big thing is, there’s
a lot of puck movement. CALLIE HOFF: Hockey is hockey,
it’s played the same way. The only difference to me
is that boys can check, girls can’t. Girls hockey is still physical. I mean, some people
like, oh, girls hockey, you can’t do anything,
it’s no contact. I wouldn’t say that, I would
say it’s still contact, it’s just not a full on check. People still do hit each other. GLEN GILDERMAN: You know, they
can angle into the boards, that’s legal to do. And that’s done and there’s
contact in front of the net, but it’s more of
a puck movement. I have had people tell me
before that they really enjoy watching the girls
game because of all the puck movement. MIKAYLA KERO: When
people come to games who haven’t seen girls hockey,
they’re really surprised at the pace of the game. Especially in the last three
years it has picked up, and it’s really become a
really good game to watch. BRI STAFNE: I love the
competitive aspect of it. I’m a competitive
person, and so to be able to play a sport
that is so competitive. And you get rewarded, obviously,
like, you score goals. GLEN GILDERMAN: And they compete
against each other in soccer This is the deepest team
that we’ve had in a while. Good skating. We all are really good friends
so that makes it really easy. Off ice and on ice,
there’s good chemistry. GLEN GILDERMAN: We
have three lines. A lot of girls high school
teams don’t have three lines, they play two lines. So when we play three
lines against them, that’s an advantage for us. MIKAYLA KERO: I think this
is probably the best team I’ve been on for girls hockey. We have a lot of depth going on. So I think we can make a
pretty deep into playoffs. BRI STAFNE: Last year,
I had to sit out, that was a huge
thing for, I would say, probably almost every one
of them out there right now. It’s just an experience
of a lifetime. ABBY HALVERSON:
Yeah, that’s the goal this year is to get
back down there and do better than we did last year. SKYLAR GUNDERSON: Playing in
the state hockey tournament Minnesota, there’s no
other thing like it. It’s a once in a
lifetime opportunity. TIM CORTES: The Frybergers
are obviously huge in Duluth with hockey. And they started Glen Avon
when the Woodland kids wouldn’t let them play anymore. So he went back. He goes, dad said we
got start our own rink. And that’s how they
started Glen Avon. It was the kids’ idea. My parents were very much
into education, very much. They were a little
concerned that all we did was hunt, fish, and play hockey. And unfortunately,
they were right. Yeah. [laughing] We thought that was all right. We had a rink, uh,
just across the street from where we lived on
1941 Waverly Avenue. And that rink is still going. This is the 70th year. And all the neighborhood
kids skated there. We had nothing organized. We were just kind of playing,
I call, sandlot hockey, and always a shinnie. We didn’t choose up sides. We didn’t have many boards. We just skated on the
rink and had a grand time. [phone ringing] Then I get a call– and we think it was 1950– from
a good friend, Billy Beaudry, who skated on the rink there. And Billy said, hey,
how would you guys like to be part of a
team in the city leagues? [music playing] That’s how it all started. And so she went to
Sears and Roebuck, and for $1.50
bought red jerseys. And then she took
felt she bought at JC Penney, and cut outs
in cursive manner, Glen Avon. It just started
out a little spark. One call a guy named
Bill Beaudry had started the whole thing. It’s just amazing. My dad was an All-American
hockey player at Dartmouth. And so he showed
us a lot of things. We all looked up to our dad. Because my dad was
a very low-key guy. But he, in a very
nice way, taught us how the game should be played. It Was very disciplined. You state your position. You pass the puck forward. And you share that puck. And it was so a lot of teamwork. You can’t back check
unless you move those legs. You can’t score goals
unless you shoot. Then he had a
classmate at Dartmouth. And he said, Bob, why don’t– Minnesota has lots
of hockey teams. Do you have a club that would
like to play in the National Peewee Championship? He said, sure. He said, you know our
teams are pretty good. And he said, well, that’s fine. He said, we’ll bring a team out. [music playing] None of us had been as far
as Minneapolis-St. Paul. But we got on the train in
Duluth, and went to Chicago, and took the New York Central
from Chicago to New York. And we were all upset,
when we got in the taxicab, that the guy turned the
handle, and it said $0.25. And we argued with the guy,
you haven’t gone any place yet. And you charge us $0.25. So a bunch of hayseeds
from Minnesota. [crowd cheering] In Madison Square Garden,
we won three games, which is what the championship was. It was certainly quite a
thrill to be skating in, what we considered,
the Taj Mahal of rinks. JERRY FRYBERGER: I suppose
they felt a little bit We had one huge advantage in
that we skated all winter long. The East Coast schools,
they could buy ice time on artificial ice,
which was not readily available to the junior
teams in the Peewees. And so when we got out there,
they didn’t have a chance. We came at them like a bunch
of banshees, because all we did was play hockey. And that’s what we did. And they couldn’t believe
that we could skate like that. [music playing] BOB FRYBERGER: Oh,
it was really big. I mean, this is the first
national championship that I think a
Duluth team had won, unless you go way back
into the rowing years when the crews were
doing so well here. But after we got off the train
in Duluth, we were all put on– each player, or two
players, three players– sat on the back of a
convertible as we went through the city of Duluth. And the crowds met us. And, oh, it was–
it was overwhelming. We couldn’t believe that
we had gone to New York and won this thing. And that was enough. But now, all these folks met us. And Mayor Johnson was there. TIM CORTES: They got the key
to the city, and a really nice trophy. The neat thing is
is now Glen Avon is using that as their logo. Glen Avon hockey and
the parents, coaches have done just a wonderful job. Lots of kids playing hockey. And it’s a real credit to the– to the support that they get. [music playing] Minneapolis, and Duluth. And they held tournaments yearly
in the sport through 1899. And it the mining
people who actually brought in the professional
team into Eveleth. And this was right
after World War I. They brought in
all Canadians to play professional hockey in the
little town of 6,000 people. They competed against towns like
Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Kansas City, Minneapolis, St. Paul. Duluth was a great strong
point in the Duluth Hornets, the old amateur team here. And they played the great teams
from the Iron Range, who were– you know, there wasn’t college
scholarships at the time. There wasn’t college hockey. It didn’t mean
anything to these guys. The 1922 Eveleth
Reds, a member it was coached by a fellow by
the name of Laurie Scott, who played with New York
Rangers for eight years. And the only local
player on that team was the late Rip Williams. And the Duluth
Zephyrs, at that time, were the farm team for
the Minneapolis Millers. And Minneapolis
Millers was a farm team for the Boston Bruins. You were paid. But Iron Range hockey
was unbelievable. And you had Cliff
Thompson at Eveleth. And he coached a few players
who went on to play a little, like John Mayasich, John
Matchefts, Finnegan, you know, all these great players. Well, Cliff Thompson was
a native of Minneapolis. And he was my first and
only hockey coach I had. He was a terrific individual. He was an individual,
not only as a coach, but as a person, who
could inspire you. In Eveleth, they had all these
great guys went on to the NHL, you know, John Mariucci. CONNIE PHEBAN: I played with
John in high school one year, then one year in JC. And never did play when
I was coaching at UMD. We didn’t play Minnesota. John did a good job
coaching at Minnesota, and had a very favorable record. It’s a great day for,
you know, John’s friendsrea. He coached the Olympic teams. And he really did
a great job at UMD. They might even have
interscholastic hockey at UMD, might have never gone
above the intramural stage without Connie
Pheban’s guidance. CONNIE PHEBAN: The
year I came down, that’s when probably
the move was being made to upgrade the, uh,
hockey at the university level. I visualized that when
I first took the job. I felt that we could go into
the Western Collegiate Hockey Conference. And take my communication
with the provost at the time was that we were in
the hotbed of hockey. We had a lot of talent
right here in Duluth. We had up the Iron Range, up
on the border, Fort Francis, we had the Lakehead,
the Winnipeg, we had Fort Francis and
Port Arthur, Fort William. So we had a nucleus of
talent to pick from. And I felt that we could
compete with anybody in the Western Conference. Ralph Romano came in. He was, uh– he replaced Connie. And Connie went off and did his
thing with the Olympic team, and so forth, and was
an icon in hockey. So Ralph Romano, he had a couple
of guys pretty secret weapons, Keith Huffer Christiansen. [music playing] And Bruce McCloud– who
became later the Commissioner of the League for youth–
played on his wing. Pat Francisco, the
captain, the second year, they played in the
WCHA, and that was when they opened the Duluth Arena. Of course, right
away, their big rival was Minnesota
automatically, because was UMD was the Duluth campus of
the University, of course. Our first game was against the
hated Minnesota Golden Gophers. And we edged them 8 to 1. So I remember that
pretty vividly. Everyone assumed the Gophers
were the big favorites. And UMD beat them 8 to 1. And Huffer had six assists. He skated around
like the Pied Piper. And he’d have five
Gophers chasing him. And then he’d pass it to
the goal mouth for a goal. Huffer was amazing
player, a little guy, five foot six, and just a
magician with the stick. The six assists,
by the way, still stands as UMD all-time
record for assists in a game. [music playing] Probably, if the
movie, “Hoosiers,” was going to be
made about hockey, it would have to be about those
Green Leaf Coleraine teams. They had players from
like, I think, it was 11 different towns. And Mike Sertich is from
Calumet, and Mick Metzer, and the [inaudible],
and, you know, I mean, it was an amazing story. And Bob Gernander pulled
them all together. But these kids grew up in
different little areas. So they’d have their own teams. They didn’t have many players,
but they were fierce rivals. And they hated each other. And they all had Colerain
where the high school was, the Greenway High
School of Colerain. And so they show up at
the state tournament, and Mike Sertich was
about 115-pound sophomore, tiniest hockey player you ever
saw in the state tournament. Greenway won the state title. He literally went
under guy’s arms. And you know, it was amazing. He was a fabulous player. They came back and
won it the next year, when he was about
130-pound junior. And the third year, they
would have won it again, but the goalie made like– I think it was Doug Long– made
65 saves, and set the record, and beat him in
repeated overtimes. [music playing] Gus Henderson, who had
had a magical run of– he went to Grand Rapids. And he put that whole
program together. And so he came in as coach. And he’d made a great inroads
for getting the Iron Range players, and, you know, the– the Dan Lempes, and
the Mark Paveliches, and some of those really
great players from the Range. And they get UMD kind
of more localized, instead of heading
towards all-Canadian. When they had a falling out,
Gus went his separate way. And they hired Mike Sertich,
one of the legendary stories in hockey. Ralph Romano didn’t
like Mike Sertich. So he hires him
as interim coach. And Mike Sertich wins Coach
of the Year in the WCHA. And the next year,
he wins it again. And he wins it the
third straight year. I started with Mike his
first year as a coach. I was a freshman. I think Mike’s going to
be ready for sainthood when the big guy calls to
have us as his first class. But I’m blessed that
I had Mike here. Because Mike Sertich
allowed me to play, and never put any
restrictions on offensively, or defensively, or
lack of defense. But that was the same
way with Tommy Kurvers, and Norm Maciver,
Matt Christensen. We were just able
to go, and play. And boy, it made
a huge difference. When we won, I think, our
first WCHA Championship against Wisconsin here, I
think that one right there was probably the
biggest game, I think, in terms of getting
it to that crescendo, and getting the school, and our
hockey program over the hump, and win a championship. [crowd cheering] Then they went to
the National Tournament at Lake Placid, NCAA Final Four. But they lost in four overtimes
in an unbelievable game where the puck was shot
in the last minute. They’re leading by a goal. And the pucks hits
the end boards, and comes out in
front of the net. And the guy has a
tap-in to tie the game. And they play four overtimes. And they lose. It was a great memory for
97 minutes and 10 seconds. The last second is
the worst memory. Yeah, it was– I’ve never watched a game since. People go, why don’t
you watch the game? I go, because I
know the outcome. COMMENTATOR (ON TV): But
it was this fine shot by Gino Cavallini late
in the fourth OT that gave the Falcons the NCAA
Division 1 Championship, 5-4 over the Bulldogs. [music playing] again at Detroit, and lost
in three overtimes to RPI– unbelievable. COMMENTATOR: Head
coach Mi Maciver and I have talked
about it a few times. And you think, we
were a bounce away from being that back-to-back
national champions. And what you appreciate
after 30 some years after is, you realized how
good team we had. COMMENTATOR (ON TV): They gave
it to Billy Watson, bingo, 4-4. He’s the best there
is in college hockey. Those teams were the
best teams UMD ever had. And they did establish
UMD as an elite program, not just a good program,
but an elite program. And they’ve stayed
up there pretty well. But when they brought
in Tom Kurvers. He won Hobey Baker. And they brought in Bill Watson. He won Hobey Baker. And the next guy who should have
won it, they had Norm Maciver, should have well won it. And then they had a
guy named Brett Hull. The award itself was kind
of in its infancy at the time. And the year before, Tom
had won at [inaudible] and was very deserving of it. When I won, it was like–
it just absolutely stunned me. I was probably more
surprised than anybody. We have five winners. We have the most of the country. It’s– I think we
were known for that, until we won that national
championship in ’11. And then it was so nice. The next year, Jack won the
Hobey Baker award [inaudible]. And it– it’s something
we’re very proud of. [music playing] When you look at that,
of all the great programs, some of the bigger
schools, a lot– all the great players
that have played, for us to have the most,
I think is pretty special to our program, and
certainly, our university. [music playing] PAT FRANSICO: If you are
a person of my vintage, you know that the game of
hockey was played outdoors for most of us. Even some of the
high school games back then we played
on the outdoor rink. And then we started
playing on the inside, and at the curling club. JOHN GILBERT: Big Polish, like
a castle, big heavy rock place. And you can imagine how
heavy a hockey arena is. The hockey rink was on the
second floor above the curling club. And you walked in– I’ll never forget
how, as you walked in, the crackling smell
of the radiators, and the people’s freezing
gloves sitting on the radiators. And then you walked
into the rink. And there was no heat. And it was natural ice
and a very small rink. For its antiquated
type of feel, it was also very intimate. So if you ask fans– if you can find fans that
still remember that– you know, 2,000 people huddled
around a little rink right in the middle of a game with
no glass around the rink. I mean, they felt like
they were part of the game. You felt like you might
be playing left wing when you were sitting in the stands. And no chicken way around,
except on the ends. Then my senior year was 1966
and ’67, that’s the beginning of the deck. And so our team opened the deck. We were the first
team that played at the Duluth Entertainment
Convention Center. That was like nirvana to us. That was pretty cool. Fabulous. And at the time And people here, I
don’t think, even appreciated or realized it. I had so much
fun playing there. and you started
traveling more to some of these other
buildings around there. It’s just like all those
buildings on the Range where there’s that
one, two, three, four very significant
hockey people that you knew cut their teeth in
those buildings. It can be a little
bit intimidating walking into some
of these places, going back to like it
was with the Hippodrome, knowing that some of these names
that played in these places are really significant
in the game of hockey. In other arenas, the parents
are all cynics and critics. And they know better
than the coach, so they’re always
second guessing. At Eveleth, they would run up
to the bar a block up the hill. On the bars tools were
the cynics and critics. And then most of them
were in the Hall of Fame. [laughing] We go into Virginia
and see a picture of Bob Harrington,
or going to Hibbing and see a picture
Mike Polich, and it starts to kind of
resonate with you, like, wow, there’s
some huge names that are skating on these
same ice sheet that I am. It definitely had a
historical aspect to it, especially when you
did walk in and see a picture of Bah
Harrington in there, and know that Mike Sertich
from UMD was from there. The Hibbing building, a
magnificent edifice where they would play the region finals. And I’ll never forget the
great guy who was there forever as the PO guy. He honestly would say, OK, you
kids, get off of the rafters. They were literally
hanging from the rafters. [band playing] SCOTT SANDELIN: I
think just playing in that building in
the section final when it’s probably 5,000 or
6,000 people in the building, it was a great atmosphere. And the people are
hanging from the rafters. And you know, it was a
really exciting time. My favorite was since-renamed
Hodgins-Bernardo in Colarain. You walked in there, and
there was never any thought that anything was
important except hockey. I mean, you walked in there. And yeah, there was
a nice, warm lobby, and you got your hot dog,
or popcorn, or coffee. When you went into
the rink, it was cold. And it was– they had
little walkways that came out over the goals. And that’s where
the goal judge sat looking straight down on it. The goal judges over
the ice, yeah, yeah. I mean, there’s so many unique
things about that building. I love playing there. Hodgins-Berardo
Arena in Colerain is one of my favorite
buildings of all time. I started going there
when I was really young. The first hockey
school I ever went to was the Greenway Hockey
School run by Bob Gernander. I love to play in there. I don’t know what it was. And watching, it was always
fun to go to the other side, because you got to go
across the catwalk. It didn’t matter
how it looked. What mattered was the game. The ice was great. The game was great. And that was just a
fantastic place to watch. [grunting] Son of a gun, frozen. Duluth stiff. Well, it’s frozen, Bob. BOB FRYBERGER: My dad
started the rink 1947. He put it in the backyard
at 1941 where the garden is. And then that wasn’t big
enough, so he moved it to the front yard. And that wasn’t big enough. So then in 1946 or
’47, he bought the lot across the street. And we used the hydrants. The fire department
gave us the hoses. And we used the
hydrant to flood it. And it was very easy deal. [squeaks] [grunts] There it is. [laughing] Oh, boy. This was going to
be the 70th year. I started doing this
when I was 10 years old. For whatever reason, I don’t
know why, we continue to do it. The kids continue to skate. JERRY FRYBERGER: It was
all done on volunteers, volunteer shoveling,
volunteer flooding, and lots of experiences. And we all learned how
to flood, good or bad, none-the-less the kids
were all part of it. Shoveling snow was part of it. Ready to go? BOB FRYBERGER: Yup. JERRY FRYBERGER: Pull the hose a
little bit here, will you, Bob? BOB FRYBERGER: Yeah. JERRY FRYBERGER: Hey, Robert? BOB FRYBERGER: Yeah? JERRY FRYBERGER: Pull that hose. BOB FRYBERGER: Yeah, I will. [water rushing] OK. [grunting] Pull a little bit, Bob. It’s ice. One time, I went and
looked at a book on ice. And the Russians had
about 15 volumes on ice. And I learned a lot. [laughing] This is the home we
grew up in right here. Yeah, 1941 Waverly Avenue. JERRY FRYBERGER: The back
hall was a changing room. But my mother
would put on lunch. And the kids said,
Mrs. Fryberger, do I have to take my skates off? And she said, no. As long as you walk without
sliding on the oriental rugs– which would have
ruined the rugs– everybody has to just
take a simple step. And make sure you don’t push
off like you’re skating. And so are the
kids would– you’d have 15 kids there with skates
on underneath the table. After a big snowstorm, my mother
and father– and my mother, particularly– would get phone
calls, is the rink cleared? Oh, yeah, it’s all done, boys. You can come on over. And you can play. Well, there we’re
still two feet of snow. But we said, why don’t
you just grab a shovel. And they can clear it out. He said, your mom fooled
us in getting out here. STEVE NOLDEEN: My
name is Steve Noldeen. I grew up a couple
blocks away from here at the Fryberger ice rink. And I used to skate here
about 25, 30 years ago all the time with my friends. And I live out of state now. And I was able to come back home
just after Christmas this year with my family. And I was able to bring my son
here, and bring them up here to the rink where I spent a
good part of my youth playing hockey, and learning
how to skate. I see these kids
enjoying it, and laughing, and falling down, and getting
up, and chasing the puck, and passing it, and so forth. And so it’s– so it brings back
all sorts of great memories. It’s almost exactly
as I remember it. They changed the
light up on the pole. But otherwise, you can still
turn it on and off yourself. You can come out here at
night, and clean the rink off, and have a great time. It’s not going very well. OK. Whoa! Whoa! Whoa! Wrong way! Wrong way! [laughing] I was so impressed
with my wrench, I wasn’t paying attention. [laughing] Then you hung
on to it, though. Well, yeah, I couldn’t
have held on too much longer. RADIO DJ: The eyes of college
hockey on AMSOIL Arena. Welcome in Bulldog
hockey on 92.1 the fan of the Red Rock Radio
Bulldog’s Sports Network. It is one versus two. The second-ranked
UMD Bulldogs at home to take on the
number one undefeated defending national
champion Fighting Hawks from the University
of North Dakota. [music playing] Growing up in Duluth,
we had season tickets for the Bulldogs. We came– we came
every night we could. And so I just– I fell in love with the team. And, yeah, I guess ever
since I can remember, it’s always been a
dream to play here. ANNOUNCER 1: Now Kuhlman center. He’ll go back to the left. Now Poganski and back. Boeser on the right. Boeser gives on the goal
line, center and pass. Oh, what a save! Miska! My name’s Dominic Toninato. I’m from Duluth, Minnesota. I play here my whole
life, except for one year. I think it’s a fun
age group to coach. I think the guys
are very motivated. You know, they obviously
want to continue to play beyond college
at the highest level. You know, our job here
is to make sure they have a real good experience. I think we tell everyone,
we want you to come in. And at the end, be a
better hockey player, but more importantly,
a better person. And I think when
you leave there, you’re ready for maybe the
next step, whether it’s hockey or life. ANNOUNCER 1: Now Kuhlman’s
going to carry to center. We got a hook coming up! ANNOUNCER 2: Yeah,
we got a hook. Yup. ANNOUNCER 1: Kuhlman
over the line! Kulhman score! ANNOUNCER 2: Hey! ANNOUNCER 1: Carson Kulman! And the Bulldogs
have scored first! CARSON KUHLMAN: I remember
my dad would bring us down. And we’d watch. And I thought how cool
it would be to play here. And I didn’t really realize
it was a real possibility until I got later on
in my hockey career. My name is Carson Kuhlman. I’m from Esko, Minnesota,
short drive here from Duluth. I grew up playing in Esko
and then made the switch over to Cloquet. SCOTT SANDELIN:
I know we’ve been pretty fortunate to have a lot
of great kids in the program. And it makes it a lot of fun. And hardworking kids,
kind of blue collar, just like our area. And they kind of take on
their temperament too. ADAM JOHNSON: Oh, UMD
was always number one. They were the first option. Obviously, growing
up watching them, they were my favorite team. My dad played here. So once I got the opportunity,
I only played on it and you know it was
a dream come true. My name is Adam Johnson. I’m from Hibbing, Minnesota. I grew up playing
there my whole life, then played a couple
of years at Sioux City, and now here in my
second year at UMD. ANNOUNCER 1: Jared
Thomas on the right wing. Good work by Succi
to keep it in. Now Succi scores! Succi let it go, right circle. Power play goal! It’s two nothing! [cheering] ADAM JOHNSON: Yeah,
it’s been a lot of fun. I’ve never been on a winning
team like this before, like a number one team. So it’s really
exciting for the guys. And I think we have a
really good group here. It’s something special. So hopefully we can keep
it going and stay up top. ANNOUNCER 1: 15 in a period. Penalty time about to expire. Wolanin kept it. Shot blocked by Spurrell. Old auspice to keep it in. Back this way to [inaudible]. Stick it out the center. Here comes Exell the other way. Three seconds in the period. Exell in the middle
for Spurrell. A shot, he put it wide. And the period is over. And listen to this
ovation for the Bulldogs! [music playing] [cheering] JARED THOMAS: I grew
up the Bulldog fan. And obviously, playing
in Northern Minnesota, your favorite school is UMD. And that was a
dream to play here. [music playing] [cheering] My name’s Jared Thomas
from Germantown, Minnesota. I played high school
in Germantown. Currently, a junior here at UMD. Obviously, the facility is one
of the top-of-the-line arenas in the country. Yeah, it’s just a great
place to come every day, and lace up the skates, and
play a game that we love. SCOTT SANDELIN: Obviously,
when you come here, and you see what, you
know, the players have, and the guts of the
rink is important to us where we spend our time. And they have a lot of things
that the Deck didn’t have. ADAM JOHNSON: It’s a big
recurring factor for people. You know, it’s one of the
best rinks, I think, around. And having such a new facility
I think is a big help. You know, it makes a great–
a lot of fun to play here. CARSON KUHLMAN: Oh, I love it. Our facilities here
are top-of-the-line. Obviously, our student section
and crowd is great too. And it’s great to
pack this place. SCOTT SANDELIN: I think
people are on top of you. And I think the
atmosphere is good. So it’s been a great change. Kuhlman walks in now. [inaudible] Score! It’s Oscar Burns shorthanded! Three to zero Bulldogs! [cheering] here have been pretty
special and memorable. Like I said, I dreamed of being
a Bulldog since I was young. And that dream came true. And now to be able
to captain the team is something really special. CARSON KUHLMAN: That’s
why this year so much fun. We’re having some success. And that just makes
it that much better. [cheering] TIM CORTES: The great prize
in it all when people see it, and it means something to them. Since I was a little boy, that’s
all I wanted to do was draw. I loved it. So my name is Tim Cortes. And I am what is
called– what I call, a commemorative sports artist. Sports art is not the only
thing to do, but it’s about 90% of my work. And how it works is a
group will give me a call, say, look, we’re celebrating
this, a coach’s retirement, national championship,
anniversary. And they’ll hire
me to do artwork to commemorate that event. My older brother,
Mike, is a goaltender. And he started at [inaudible]
at five years old, and immediately
became a goaltender when one of the
other kids was sick. So me, I had follow what
my brother was doing. I loved playing goalie. And that’s a– I think it
started at the local rink here. I just remember putting them on,
and just not taking them off. And I just stayed out
there, stayed out. I don’t care how cold it was. I just loved taking shots. And I did, all the way
up until two years ago, I just couldn’t get enough. INTERVIEWER: Once a
goalie, always a goalie. Always, always a goalie. Now I’m coaching them. And I love that. As I got back into
coaching [inaudible], I took some time
off a few years. And then Mike asked me if I was
interested to coach at East. Of course– of course, I was. [music playing] I wanted to play in the NHL. I didn’t do that. And I said, when
done with that, I’m going to be a commercial artist. And the first professional
job that I did was a picture of Lou Nanne. He was going in the
Hall of Fame in Eveleth. And they said, hey,
will you do this for us? And so I did it. And what it is is a
still life, really. I get the artifacts, and the
stuff from the organization. I set it up in my other
room, start taking pictures. I just take pictures
with my phone. So that’s the process. I just take those pictures,
find my art board. And I just sketch it
out the way I see it. And it’s very meticulous work. But I’m used to it. I’ve done probably 2,000
pictures in the last 20 years. I’m the worst gauger of time. After all the pictures that
I do, I have a guy in my head that says, you’ve got time. Don’t worry about it. You can always finish
it in the last 48 hours. You know, the stuff like this is
really a brain game, sometimes. You really got to be accurate. To do a metal from
the state tournament, that takes a lot of time
and precision, you know, and sharp pencils. [laughs] I love drawing trophies. It’s a challenge. And I love to do it. And old jerseys, I could
draw them all day long. [music playing] This is my rink
that I grew up at. And later on in life, I was
the rink director there. So I was really,
really happy when they decided they wanted to do this. I have a few of my own
artifacts in there, which I told them right off, I
said, hey, if I’m doing this, I’m putting my first
goalie mask in there. So that was my
first goalie mask. That was my jersey. That was my brother’s jacket. And this just is
very, very special. [music playing] This was done when
UMD, back in 2011, won the National Championship,
first national championship they ever had. Earlier in the season, I
talked to Scott Sandelin. that I did for the
women’s, is they blew them up to about six
feet, and framed them. So when you walk in the
entrance, the players entrance, at AMSOIL Arena on
the women’s side, you have their national
championship huge. On the men, you have this. And I’m very, very
proud of that. This was the brainchild of Bill
Watson, who you just talked to. into the Hall of Fame. And going and meeting
them at the hotel, taking a bunch of
pictures with them. I remember they
were so blown away that somebody could do that. The wife starts crying. And I just– that’s a home
run to me when people do that. And that was pretty
special for me. DOUG PALAZZARI:
Here we honor those that have made their
contributions to make American hockey
what it is today. And it really is great today. I’m Doug Palazzari,
the Executive Director of the United States
Hockey Hall of Fame Museum. Hockey is all over
the country now. We have great athletes playing
in all the states, players that come in from everywhere. We’re on par with any
hockey-playing country in the world. And that’s something
that’s taken a lot of years to accomplish. DAVID TUMASSONI: To have it
here is totally appropriate, because of all the history that
Eveleth has with with hockey. And then when you start
going around the place, and realizing the huge
history that there is in, not only Minnesota,
but United States, of hockey. I love that it’s in Eveleth. You know, as much
as people would want to see it in
the Twin Cities, or maybe in their
town on the Range, I love that it’s in
Eveleth, just for the tie to the Hippodrome, the
tie to John Mariucci, the ties to Johnny Mayasich,
who may have been the greatest college player of all time. DOUG PALAZZARI: This area
is one of the birthplaces of the hockey in our country. And they’ve been playing here
since late 1800s, early 1990s. So it’s really in
the culture up here. And Eveleth just happened
to have, I think, the facilities ahead of other
people, and other places, and a lot of really
good athletes. Eveleth has had an indoor
rink since the early 1900s. You know, the current
Hippodrome that’s there was built, I
think, in about 1922. And there was a previous
indoor rink before that. JON GARVER: The
Eveleth Hippodrome is a cathedral of high
school hockey in Minnesota when you start to think about
how long it’s been there, and some people that
have come through there. DOUG PALAZZARI: Inside side
that Eveleth Hippodrome, it’s like a shrine. You know, it’s just beautiful. Any kid that lives
here that walks in here would like to be up
on that wall one day. Eveleth has an incredible
culture of hockey here. People love it. And they’re all fans of
this sport, from little kids up through the NHL. JON GARVER: Eveleth
was a hockey factory. And every generation had one,
two, or three, even more, significant players
that came from Eveleth. You’d walk into the
Hippodrome in Eveleth, and you’d see a picture of
John Mayasich, and picture of John Mariucci, and a picture
of whoever the player may be, Doug Palazzari. DOUG PALAZZARI: On the ’60
the Olympics, of course, you have John
Mayasich, from Eveleth. The the ’56 Olympics,
you had John [inaudible], and Mayasich, and Willard
Ikola all playing. And the coach was John
Mariucci, all from Eveleth. DAVID TUMASSONI:
And so this place is just a wonderful mecca. And when people do
come here, they say, wow, is that ever a great place. JON GARVER: Walking
in and seeing the wall with all the NHL logos was
cool, and the never-ending loop of the 1980 Olympic games
against the Soviet Union was cool. DOUG PALAZZARI: We have a lot
of nice video presentation. The kids love to shoot pucks. We’ve got a couple
of shooting areas. So everybody is a little
bit different of what they– what they enjoy. JON GARVER: I wish
more people would take the time to make the
trip up there and see that. Because for the gaming
in the United States, it’s such a significant
piece of our history. DOUG PALAZZARI: If you
like American hockey, this is the place to go. [music playing] Growing up here in
Eveleth, all the youngsters wanted to play hockey. We played as kids
outside all the time. You got into the Hippodrome
on Saturday mornings. The rest your hockey
was all outdoors. One day, when I was the only
one going up there to play, the most expensive stick
was $2.50 Northland Pro. And I’ll tell you, when
you had one of those, you made sure you
took good care. But there was one that
you could buy for $0.75. Back when I was a kid and
the National Hockey League only had six teams, it was
not on television. We’d rarely see a National
Hockey League game. Frank [inaudible]
says, practice. He says, at the time, you know,
there was only 16 to the NHL. And like three of them had
goalies from the Iron Range, you know, from Eveleth. Finding a place to skate,
and be outside, and have fun, and enjoy the outdoors. That’s what this is all about. It, uh, puts a smile
on my kid’s face, and every other
kid’s face out there. So that’s why we
do it, for kids. In Duluth is the only
place in North America where there’s actually little
kids leagues that still play outside. [horn blows] That’s amazing. There’s something magical
about outdoor hock and Dad came on with
all new hockey gear, and tossed it on
me in the basement. And I absolutely hated it. Brought me to the rink. Couldn’t skate, obviously. Absolutely hated it. But he just kept telling me
to keep going, keep trying, and keep getting back up. And I finally
learned how to skate. And ever since then, I
fell in love with the game. When I came home,
I’m like, Mom, Dad,at jus- I loved more than
anything was just the feeling of scoring a goal,
and contributing to your team winning a game. You know, the
games are forgotten. The trophies are stored away. But the character you build
playing this wonderful game, there’s nothing like it,
absolutely nothing like it. [music – “national anthem”]