‘Rink of Dreams’ dedicated to military veterans breaks ground in Hastings

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A new ice rink will be dedicated to members of the military and their families.

The official groundbreaking for the Rink of Dreams was held Friday afternoon in Hastings.

“This is going to be a cool thing for the kids,” said Verena Busch, who lives in Hastings.

“Allowing the kids to stay engaged in the hockey program while their mother or father are deployed is great,” said Jay Busch, a veteran who lives in Hastings.

Jay Busch served in the Marines for eight years and went overseas to Afghanistan.

“Just always felt the desire to give back to this nation that has given us all so much,” Jay Busch said.

He says this rink will be a valuable resource to so many.

“The organization is great, gives an opportunity to young kids everywhere,” Jay Busch said.

The organization making it all happen is the nonprofit United Heroes League.

“The mission is to keep kids active in sport and create relationships for military families coming back to the community,” said Tom Patnode, chairman of the United Heroes League.

Patnode says this rink will host different kids’ camps, practices and games with military kids and veterans from around the state and country.

“It’s really the opportunity to help them stay active, be good students in the classroom, and give them opportunities to take their mind off of maybe missing a parent who’s deployed or something like that,” Patnode said.

On Veterans Day, a tribute to those who served and their loved ones, in classic Minnesota fashion.

The rink is expected to be ready for use sometime next fall.

To learn more about United Heroes League and to help the cause, visit the organization’s website.