An unseasonably warm winter could melt the hopes of registrants signed up for the upcoming pond hockey tournament in Lake in the Hills.
The village of Lake in the Hills second 4-on-4 pond hockey tournament is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Feb. 4 on Woods Creek Lake off Indian Trail Beach, 228 N. Indian Trail.
Originally scheduled for Jan. 14, the tournament was re-scheduled in late December, said Trevor Bosack, recreation supervisor for the village of Lake in the Hills Parks & Recreation Department.
“Safety is our No. 1 priority,” Bosack said. “My thought is that we are probably leaning toward not running it at all from what I can tell with the weather” and lake conditions.
Eight inches of ice is needed to play safely on the lake, but there is standing water in areas of Woods Creek Lake, Bosack said. Last year, a solid 12 inches of ice provided a safe surface for the tournament.
While temperatures have been below-freezing in recent days, Bosack said temperatures are expected to warm over the weekend and next week, not helping the prospects for the tournament, which is intended to become an annual event.
The village will make an official decision on whether to cancel the tournament, which draws players from throughout the area, the week of Jan. 30, Bosack said.
Another popular ice sport for the area, the 41st annual Doc Haznow Chili Open Golf Classic held on Crystal Lake, recently was postponed to Feb. 18, according to the Northwest Herald.
Many Who Played Last Year, Register for This Year's Tournament
In its second year, the village’s pond hockey tournament appears to have a dedicated following.
Nine of the 12 teams that competed last year registered to play again this year, and the remaining seven open spots in the tournament were filled the first day of registration.
During last year’s tournament, the Gray Farm Geese, made up of players from the Schaumburg area, won the tournament. The Wolfpack, made up of players from Lake in the Hills, came in second. Lake in the Hills Patch has an article about the 2011 tournament and video clips of interviews from last year's winners.
More than 80 spectators weathered cold temperatures to watch the 2010 tournament.
If the double elimination tournament is held this year, there will be four rinks instead of the two used last year. Also different this year, teams are allowed to have up to seven players instead of the five-member maximum last year.
The games will consist of two 15-minute periods. The People for Parks Foundation plans to host a concession stand out of the beach house at Indian Trail Beach.