It is January 2018.  How’s it looking for you and your facility? The high school season is well underway and youth tournaments are all around the state of hockey. All the things you plotted out last spring & summer have worked out great for you and your facility, right?

Certainly, there are issues that come up unexpectedly each season. If you are new to management in this industry, you will find your greatest challenge is to stay ahead of the moving target.  Preparation is the key for you and your staff.  That is where MIAMA comes in. The Spring Workshops and Fall Conferences go a long way to prepare you for these challenges.

The key thing to remember is you are not alone.  You have facilities in your area where you can turn to as well as the MIAMA resources. Your questions and concerns can be answered immediately by utilizing these resources: The MIAMA website at www.miama.org , sell your available ice at www.rinkfinder.com or utilize our private Facebook group to ask your questions. If you need any help with these resources, don’t hesitate to contact the MIAMA Administrative Assistant Dean Mulso at dmulso@miama.org or the MIAMA Communications Director Jon Balvance at jbalvance@miama.org They are there for your questions and to help.

The MIAMA Vendors have proven to be a most valuable resource for information.  Another valuable tool brought to you by MIAMA is the rink tour program whereby tours are set up in rinks in a certain area.  In the past couple years of hosting rink tour’s, I have heard comments from rink managers in the same town who have never visited the other rink or met the Manager or the employees.  After a tour, a working relationship proved to be very valuable for those that take advantage of this great MIAMA program.

Remember how this article started?  How is 2018 going, are the plans you made holding true?  It is an incredible resource visiting other rinks to see both design and operation policies at work in other buildings that you can possibly implement in your building.  And the same is true, your success can be passed on the others.  That is MIAMA at its best.  The 2018 MIAMA Rink Tour Program is currently being developed. If your facility would like to be a part of this program, please contact Communications Director Jon Balvance at jbalvance@miama.org. MIAMA will keep you posted as to the 2018 schedule through our weekly MIAMA Around the rink emails. With the experience of MIAMA members, you get 1st hand knowledge from those that have been there and made mistakes.  You’ll also get success stories of what your peers have done for this or that problem in your facility. from MIAMA has been there to educate, guide and support

My Grandson is now playing Pee Wee A hockey, so I get to travel around to many rinks.  I do see the influence of MIAMA everywhere.  Clean buildings that have taken safety as a priority, making the facility user friendly on all accounts, be it scheduling or operations.  The staff are available, knowledgeable and accommodating.  The ice conditions are great, the boards are clean and safe, locker rooms are welcoming.

These are exciting times in the ice rink industry.  We are always fighting for our relevance and our place in the community.  Being all the things MIAMA stands for, goes along way to that end.

Here’s to a successful 2018 and beyond.

Walt Bruley – Retired

MIAMA Director Emeritus – Alumni

January 2018 – MIAMA Board Member Article