Broomball bounces back

Lex Treinen/Sun Star Reporter 
September 18, 2012

After administrators cancelled intramural broomball last year because of low enrollment, a group of administrators, ASUAF senators and broomball enthusiasts are excited that broomball will continue this year at an affordable cost. They are also excited about a new location: a yet-unfinished outdoor ice arena in front of the SRC, which is expected to be completed and ready for use by the second session, according to the Student Recreation Center Wellness Coordinator Kaydee Miller.

The pavement in front of the Student Recreation Center pictured above is being turned into an ice rink on which broomball players will be battling for the win. Sept. 18th, 2012. Fernanda Chamorro/Sun Star

Broomball was cancelled last year after the broomball fee was raised from the standard fee of $7.85 to the ice sport fee of $26.75. Students were unwilling to pay the extra money, and too few signed up to fill a league. ASUAF vice president Ball said many students thought that the increased fee was too much since broomball players often only get 10 minutes of ice time when their team is fielding a full roster. Miller said that the ownership transfer of the SRC from the Athletic Department to Student Services, did not affect the price. Dilon Ball said thatStudent Services had been putting a “substantial amount” of money to keep broomball fees at the standard intramural fee. “In all honesty, having the ice time costs more than what the standard intramural fee would cover,” Ball said.

Ball and ASUAF Senators Andy Chamberlain and Micky Zakurdaew were determined to bring back broomball this year. Originally the group decided to support legislation that would cover the entire cost of the second session of broomball for students who payed for the first. The $1,200 bill will go into effect to pay for the second quarter for those who pay for the first. It originally would have been enough to cover the second session at $26.75. That was before the plans for the outdoor ice-rink had been sufficiently developed.

According to Miller, the new ice-rink will be beneficial not only because it will cut the cost back to the original $7.85 for everybody, but also because it will allow players to have more reasonable game times. “I think we will have games from five to six, since there won’t be any hockey allowed,” Miller said. The rink will be for recreational skaters for most of the day and admission will be free for students who are paying the SRC fee.

Ball and others believe that the legislation supports ASUAF’s mission of representing students at UAF. “Broomball was an integral part of the UAF experience,” Ball said. “A lot of people played and cared about it.”

Though the rink is currently just a field of dirt in front of the SRC, it will be paved and walled in before the start of the second session sometime in October, assuming there are no weather catastrophes. “Nothing’s a given when your working in the elements,” Miller said, “but it should be completed by second session.”

Of course, an outdoor rink in Fairbanks presents some problems, foremost is the weather. “If it’s -40, we’ll probably postpone the games,” Miller said. Cold weather can also cause cracked ice, a safety hazard for users. The rink will be mopped with a locally made mini-Zamboni. With any luck, broomball can retake its place as UAF’s most popular intramural.

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1 Response

  1. Anne says:

    Great informative article! Broomball is definitely in a transition phase but I have high hopes for this schoolyear and the next.

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