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Pond hockey tournament Saturday in Bemidji

Austin Zetah, left, and Cam Dahedl are among the volunteers from Zetah Construction setting up rinks Thursday for the fourth annual Lake Bemidji Pond Hockey Tournament. The tournament will be this weekend in front of the Hampton Inn & Suites on Lake Bemidji. Monte Draper | Bemidji Pioneer

BEMIDJI – The fourth Lake Bemidji Pond Hockey Tournament is set for Saturday.

The first games will start at 9 a.m. on Lake Bemidji behind the Hampton Inn and Suites. The event is free and open to the public.

Hockey players from around the region will make up 13 teams and fill up six rinks on the lake.

“It’s a lot of local teams,” said Kayla Walters, general manager of the Hampton Inn and Suites, which is co-sponsoring the event. “We also have people coming from around Minnesota and eastern North Dakota.

“And kind of all age groups.”  

A heated tent with food and drink vendors will be on site, as well as an open rink for the public.

Proceeds from the event will go to the Bemidji State University women’s soccer program, Walters said.  

The team is pitching in to help run the tournament and officiate the games, said Beaver Pride director Jake Bluhm. The team using the proceeds to take a trip to Costa Rica this summer for a tournament, he said.

Walters said trucks have been plowing the fresh snowfall off the lake and as of Wednesday, Zambonis were clearing the ice.

Sponsors include Acme Tools, Green Mill Restaurant and Bar, Bernick’s, Zetah Construction Inc., RP Broadcasting, the Bemidji Area Chamber of Commerce and Nei Bottling.

John Hageman

John Hageman covers North Dakota politics from the Forum News Service bureau in Bismarck. He attended the University of Minnesota in the Twin Cities, where he studied journalism and political science, and he previously worked at the Grand Forks Herald and Bemidji Pioneer.  

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