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Posted on Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 7:07 a.m.

Fireworks, music and beer (lots and lots of beer) part of the fun at Whitmore Lake pond hockey tournament

By Pete Cunningham

The Michigan Pond Hockey Sports Charities Michigan Pond Hockey Classic began on Friday. There were fireworks, musical performances, hockey (of course) and beer.

Lots and lots of beer.

MPHSC president Sam Iaquinto said 110 seven-man teams registered for the three-day long event, which is as much a winter carnival as it is a pond hockey tournament. According to Whitmore Lake Tavern owner John Ciaramitaro, it's the second busiest weekend of the year on the lake behind only the Fourth of July.

Benefits from the event are donated to help cover costs for youth athletic teams, particularly for young athletes from low-income homes. The winner of the top division wins an all expenses paid trip to Finland to compete in the Red Bull Open Ice World Championship.

The finals are scheduled for 4:20 p.m. on Sunday, but there is plenty on the schedule out at Whitmore Lake in the meantime.

Pete Cunningham covers sports for He can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @petcunningham.



Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 11:10 p.m.

Teaparty Hockey.


Sat, Feb 9, 2013 : 1:57 p.m.

Beer at Whitmore Lake? That's never happened before.