Frequently Asked Questions
1. Who are the Capital City Condors?
The Condors (as we like to call them for short!) are a family of hockey teams for children, teens and adults with intellectual and/or intellectual + physical disabilities. The Condors were established in 2008 and grew from one small team with just 3 players to 4 teams with more than 100 players in the first 5 years and now have 5 teams and 110 players currently on the roster!
We are thrilled to announce that our roster is open to both returning and new players of ANY ability!
Currently, teams can be found in Kanata, Gloucester, Cambridge, and Belleville, ON. The Condors look forward to planting teams across Canada – if you’d like to be a part of bringing special hockey to your community, please contact our President & Co-Founder, Jim Perkins: presatcapitalcitycondors.org (substitute @ for “at”).
The Condors are affiliated with and insured by Hockey of Eastern Ontario, a division of Hockey Canada. We are also members of Special Hockey International – a collective of special hockey teams around the world with the common goal of sharing terrific hockey, forging lasting friendships, ensuring excellence in programming and operations, joining together in an annual tournament, and supporting the international growth and recognition of special hockey.
2. Who can join the team?
Any willing athlete, regardless of skating ability, male or female, aged six years and up, who because of an intellectual or intellectual+physical disability are unable to play on a regular ice hockey team.
3. Is full hockey equipment required?
Absolutely, yes! All Condors athletes are required to wear full CSA approved hockey equipment for each and every practice or game with no exceptions. In addition, the Condors require that all athletes wear: a helmet with a cage and a neck guard. Wrist slash protectors are also strongly recommended.
The full list of required equipment can be found on page 4 of our registration package, available under the tab “Player Registration.”
4. What skills will the players need?
Athletes who don’t skate yet are more than welcome on the team, we have a terrific Learn-to-Skate component to our programs! All that is needed is what they already have – a desire to play ice hockey as part of a team!
However, if an athlete comes to the Condors with skating already under his or her belt, well then we have challenging, motivating, skill-development for them too! The Condors coaches will guide each player to improve not only their skating and hockey skills, but also their “team-play” skills!
One of the most exciting (and we might argue, most important) side benefits of joining the Condors is the social development we have witnessed in our athletes! Players learn good sportsmanship, team-play, sharing, and how to improve their communication as members of the team.
The development of these skills in a completely accepting environment carries over to our social and fundraising events AND has even carried over to improvements outside the team as well! In many cases, parents have reported improvements at home and at school as self-esteem and self-confidence improve. To find out more about that, come’on out to a practice sometime and meet some of our incredible parents!
5. Are the teams divided up somehow?
Yes, in order to provide the safest, most fun, most teachable environment for all the Condors athletes, our teams are divided according to not only ability but also under social considerations as well. The Condors coaches, in collaboration with the parents of each athlete, will recommend a designation to Group 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 (when we join with other Special Hockey International teams for tournaments, we follow their C, B, or A format).
Here’s the break-down:
Groups 1 & 2 is for players who are learning to skate, who skate but may need some assistance or an assistive device), who skate on their own but perhaps not quite at the speed of the Group 3, or who socially enjoy playing with their Group 1 & 2 team-mates! These players focus on skill development via skating and basic hockey drills and enjoy non-competitive scrimmaging for the latter part of each practice as well as community team friendship games throughout the season.
Group 3 is for players who skate well on their own and require very little to no assistance on the ice. These players tend to skate faster and demonstrate more developed hockey skills. Group 3 players also focus on improving their skating and game playing skills via hockey drills and agility practice. These players also enjoy a mildly “competitive” scrimmage (although each team is always a winner in special hockey) for the second half of each practice as well as community team friendship games throughout the season!
Groups 4 & 5 are for players who skate very well frontwards and backwards and have advanced hockey skills. These players change “on the fly” and require little to no on-ice support. A players are selected by the Head Coaches and are subject to an additional Code of Conduct. Play is considered more “competitive” although the spirit of special hockey is still of paramount importance. Group 4 & 5 players will enjoy many community team friendship games throughout the season.
5. Is the Condors run by volunteers or paid staff?
The answer is “yes!” The Condors Hockey Association is run by a volunteer Board of Directors and one paid contract position in Ottawa, ON. We also have an on-site volunteer Operations Team in Cambridge, ON. There are 75+ amazing volunteers generously giving of their time and talents to the Condors both on and off the ice.
6. Are the Condors a Registered Charitable Organization and if so, how can I support them?
Yes! The Condors are a Registered Canadian Charity 827288515RR0001 and have audited financial statements available to our members. We have strong financial accountability to our membership and sponsors and are working hard to ensure that as we grow, our policies and practices also grow and improve accordingly. As required by the CRA, the Condors disclose required financial information to provide transparency into the finances of the organization. This can be found here.
The Condors are extremely grateful for the generous support of our sponsors and community! If you would like more info about sponsorship please check the “Sponsor the Condors” section of our website! If you’d like to donate to the team in any way, please use the PayPal button on our homepage. E-transfers are also gratefully accepted!
For more information, please contact Wendell McConnell: Condors Treasurer
We advertise all our fundraising events in the Calendar on this website, on our Facebook page- Capital City Condors!, and on Twitter – @condorsottawa. We’d love to have you, your family and friends come out to an event to support the team!
Corporate sponsorships and partnerships are also welcome as we seek to provide continued excellence with our team here in Ottawa as well as promote and support the growth of special hockey across Canada.
7. These teams sound so cool! How can I get involved?
Help is needed both on and off ice. For starters, all volunteers must fill-out the Volunteer Form located under the “Volunteer Registration” tab on this website. There’s a spot on the form where you can tell us what area you’re most interested in as a potential volunteer. Any questions can be directed to our Volunteer Coordinator by using the correct option in the “Contact Us” tab on this website.
Here’s a break-down of our two volunteer groups:
The Condors offers a high coach-to-player ratio on the ice to ensure the safety, fun, & learning of each player, no matter what their ability!
Our Head and Assistant Coaches are all Hockey Canada certified and the Condors organization has 5 certified Hockey Trainers at all times.
On-ice volunteers must:
~be at least 16 years of age
~submit a photocopy of a valid Vulnerable Persons Police Check
~be comfortable taking and submitting to direction from the head-coach or assistant head-coach
~be competent skaters, and most importantly,
~have terrific positive attitudes!
There are a number of committees that could use another willing hand. These committees are the “backbone” our of organization and ensure that the Condors are a well-rounded team! Here a few areas to consider: how about the fundraising committee? The social committee? The awards banquet committee or the golf tournament committee? Whether you would like to be involved in a leadership role or not, your help will be greatly appreciated!
8.Wow! Who do I contact to find out more about these amazing teams?</font color>
Well, you can click on over to the “Contact Us” tab on our homepage and choose from the options there, or you can come out to a practice and see these amazing athletes for yourself! Hope to see you soon!