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National Press Release
Contact: Mike Hickey, President, ASHA (email@example.com)
Chris Beehler, Official Adventures (firstname.lastname@example.org)
American Special Hockey Association Teams Up with New Children’s Chapter Hockey Book Celebrating Character with Down syndrome and NHL Greats:
December Buy a Player a Book Drive
Every day is a great day for hockey and reading! The newly released Official Adventures hockey chapter book series celebrates a rarity in today’s children’s literature—a character with Down syndrome.
With 58 programs in more than 54 US cities, ASHA is making stars on the ice! Created in 2000 for players with developmental disabilities, ASHA gives people of all ages and abilities a chance to learn and grow by playing hockey.
ASHA strives to give people with physical and developmental disabilities the chance to play ice hockey in an environment which is adapted to the level of ability which the athletes are able to participate. Special hockey exists for the enrichment of the athlete with a developmental disability. In addition to physical hockey skills, the program emphasizes the development of desirable individual characteristics such as dependability, self-reliance, concentration, willingness to share, and personal accountability. The love for the game alone develops within each player, enhancing the characteristics that will help the player to be more successful both on and off the ice.
“Drop the Puck, It’s Hockey Season” and “Drop the Puck, Shoot for the Cup,” are the first two books recently released in The Official Adventures Series. Both books tell the tale of two brothers, Blaine and Cullen. On and off the ice, they have deep love for the game and also each other! Cullen is the all-star team captain but his brother Blaine, team manager, is clearly the “unsung hero” of the team. The Official Adventures Series are not just another children's book about hockey. They are America's hottest new children's chapter books that are modernizing children's literature.
Blaine, the team manager, who has Down syndrome, is clearly the "unsung hero" of the team in each book. Each book features and puts Blaine in the spotlight.
“This is a rarity in literature with illustrations. We’ve seen characters with special needs on stage, film and other artistic expressions. But, in books such a character is almost non-existent. It really is ‘ice breaking,” states Katrina Dohm, Illustrator and Co-Creator, The Official Adventures Series.
The Official Adventures/ASHA family includes endorsements and support of NHL greats Alex Ovechkin (Washington Capitals), Jeremy Roenick (NBC Sports), Dave Hakstol (Philadelphia Flyers), Matt Cullen (Pittsburgh Penguins), Joe Pavelski (San Jose Sharks), Jordan Leopold (Minnesota Wild), Lou Nanne (Minnesota), USA Olympians Jocelyne and Monique Lamoureux and the most famous high school hockey player, Jack Jablonski (Bel13ve in Miracles Foundation).
“This is a very worthwhile read that contains life lessons beyond the rink. It’s a great pickup and I especially appreciate that it includes Blaine, a special needs character. All our players need a copy of these books to help them grow and celebrate who they are,” states Mike Hickey, President, American Special Hockey Association.
During the month of December, everyone has an opportunity to provide a copy of the books to ASHA players through a reduced price and donation. For $12 (Reg $18.95), donors can purchase a copy for an ASHA player and stuff their “hockey stocking!” Donors can make their special purchase online at www.officialadventures.org or by the Go Fund Me campaign at https://www.gofundme.com/8jcbztcc.
“Certainly, a project of complete joy, on and off the ice,” states Jayne Jones, Author and Co-Creator, The Official Adventures Series.
December 1, 2015
State of Hockey, USA
New children's book featuring characters based on Flyers Head Coach Dave Hakstol's Daughter Nationally Released In Philly
(Oct. 2015) - The 2015-2016 hockey season has just gotten underway, and during the Nov. 12 game between the Philadelphia Flyers and the Washington Capitals, there will be a national launch release celebration for the new children’s chapter book, Drop the Puck, Shoot for the Cup.
The story features a two young girls who have made the boy’s team. The girls are Avery, named after Avery Hakstol, daughter of Dave Hakstol, NHL Head Coach of the Philadelphia Flyers, and Paisely, named after Paisley Leopold, daughter of Jordan Leopold, NHL player.
From the traditional hockey hair to the game ending handshake, “Drop the Puck, Shoot for the Cup,” ensures life lessons while inspiring fair play, sportsmanship and humor. The book has been endorsed by NHL greats Alex Ovechkin, Coach Dave Hakstol, Matt Cullen and Mike Hickey, President of the American Special Hockey Association.
Katrina, & Jayne with Philly ASHA kids
Katrina Dohm, Coach Hakstol, Jayne Jones
Katrina, Avery, Jayne
A Minnesota First--New Children’s Hockey Book with a Character Based on Jack Jablonski (Jabs) Debuts Nov. 7
(Oct. 2015) - The 2015-2016 hockey season is just getting underway, and on Nov. 7, there will be a fundraising gala for the Foundation started in honor of perhaps the most well-known high school hockey player in Minnesota. Jack Jablonski is the former Benilde-St. Margaret’s hockey player who was hit from behind during a Minnesota High School Hockey Tournament on Dec. 30, 2011, leaving him paralyzed. The injury ended his high school hockey career and hopes for playing pro in the future.
But “Jabs” (as he’s known) has gone onto bigger and better things! He is attending the University of Southern California, where he plans to major in broadcast journalism. His foundation, Bel13ve in Miracles, is actively raising money to support spinal cord injury recovery.
On Sat., Nov. 7, 2015, "A Night to Bel13ve," will be held at the RiverCentre in St. Paul prior to the Minnesota Wild’s game against the Tampa Bay Lightning. The pre-game party and dinner will also mark the official launch of a new children's hockey chapter book with a character based on Jack Jablonski.
"Drop the Puck, Shoot for the Cup," is set during Minnesota state hockey tournament time and features a character named “Ace,” who still gets around in a wheelchair two years after having been checked from behind at the same tournament the main characters in the book are competing in. The story also highlights two girls who had made the boy’s team, and contributed significantly to the team’s run at the cup.
The book has been endorsed for its hat-trick scoring storytelling by NHL greats Alex Ovechkin, Coach Dave Hakstol, Matt Cullen and Mike Hickey, President of the American Special Hockey Association. The national book launch will be hosted by the Philadelphia Flyers in November 12.
The Official Adventures Series
Drop the Puck, Shoot for the Cup
Instilling the Grand Hockey Tradition
and Love of the Game
They say kids learn some of the most important lessons in life by participating in sports.
This is especially true for the loveable characters in The Official Adventures series of books.
Just in time for the 2015-2016 hockey season, they will be releasing Book 2 in their series. Drop the Puck, Shoot for the Cup is scheduled for release in Oct. 2015. This sweet goal scoring hockey tale is based in Hockeytown USA (Warroad, MN) and shares the grand hockey tradition, love and competition of the Minnesota State High School Hockey Tournament.
This second book hails the reader’s favorite characters on the team roster, Blaine and Cullen. Blaine, the hockey team manager and brother to the team’s all-star captain has Down syndrome and is clearly the “unsung hero” of the team. This unprecedented character in literature teaches young readers about respecting individuals with special needs.
Additionally, in a sensitive manner the story educates young players about the dangers of checking from behind with a new character who is wheel-chair bound after his high school career ending injury. The character is based on—and in honor of—Jack Jablonski, a Twin Citieis hockey player who was paralyzed after suffering a hit from behind during a game on Dec. 30, 2011. He is now 19 and a student at the University of Southern California.
From the traditional hockey hair to the game ending handshake, “Drop the Puck, Shoot for the Cup,” ensures life lessons while inspiring fair play, sportsmanship and humor. Snow balls and fun are flying high in the story, which will hit home with many Midwest readers, when the young players make a snow sculpture, the “Mount State of Hockey” on a snow day from school that resembles Mount Rushmore with the faces of Coach Herb Brooks, T.J. Oshie, Zach Parise and the book’s character who was checked from behind.
Fun doesn’t stop outside and skates it way inside the rink! Parents and fans gather to watch the State Pee Wee championship and they aren’t disappointed. The tale’s two girl characters who play on the boy’s team show everyone a lesson or two! The characters will make you laugh, cry and cheer! Avery, named after Avery Hakstol, daughter of Dave Hakstol, NHL Head Coach of the Philadelphia Flyers and Paisely, named after Paisley Leopold, daughter of Jordan Leopold, NHL player.
Jones and Dohm, both educators, have a shared love and energy-driven passion for outstanding academics, stellar athletic and innovative arts. Jones and Dohm, have earned their “Varsity Letter” and “Hall of Fame” status for their real-life story-telling, colorful fresh illustrating and combined natural zest for helping young learners enjoy reading.