NEWBURYPORT — In what has become the equivalent of World War III in the River Rival Region, the Newburyport/Triton hockey rivalry commences once again at the Graf Rink Saturday afternoon. The coaches, Newburyport’s Paul Yameen and Triton’s Drew Wile, are hoping fans will join them for a little dinner and dancing after all the body checks have been thrown.
“Rivals don’t usually do this,” said Wile. “But because Paul and I have such a good friendship, because we have such respect for each other, we need this for our programs. Our programs deserve this, and it’s just time to do a little renovation.”
That renovation, an expansion to the Graf that would add two more state-of-the-art locker rooms in an expansion to the back of the rink as well as free up space in the current dressing areas, will come to the area at the price of an estimated $200,000. So to that end, the Friends of Newburyport Hockey will be co-hosting a fundraiser with their Triton counterparts at the Elks Lodge directly after the game, and across the street from the rink to raise funds.
The evening will consist of dinner, dancing and a silent auction for over $15.000 worth of auction items donated by area hockey fans. Live Irish music will be provided by The Old Brigade.
“It’s just the community coming together,” said Wile. “Yeah, there will be some old rivals there, talking to each other. Guys that are running the youth programs now are all coming together because they have sons that are playing for the Newburyport and Triton hockey programs. They are coming together now because they know this will make those programs so much better. These programs, I think it is safe to say, are the class of the North Shore.”