I once got a piece of advice from a former boss of mine about intermission games while working in junior hockey that I’ll never forget and I think is still relevant today. “Make the game so entertaining for fans that they forget they’re at sports game.”
In hockey you have two intermissions which means you have thirty four minuets of empty ice time. If you keep that time empty it means you lose people’s attention which is the last thing you want.
So what do we do? We introduce intermission games.
Here’s our list of the top 10 intermission games to keep people’s attention where you want it, on the ice.
Dodgeball on ice
Remember the school yard game from your youth? Well let’s bring it back except this time let’s slap some helmets on our contestants and put them on ice. The Florida Everblades have the most famous example of this when Patriots star Rob Gronkowski joined in on the fun:
Youth Hockey scrimmage
It’s been around for a long time but everyone still loves it. Ask the local youth PeeWee or Mites team to lace up and hit the ice for a 5min scrimmage. The fans love seeing the kiddos go at it and sometimes it ends up being more entertaining the game itself. This is a sure way to get some smiles on your fans faces. Plus it helps promote your youth programs to families.
This works best if you have a big screen with camera operators but you can also choose fans at random out of the crowd and have them head to center ice to compete. The goal is simple: Have fans show of their best dance moves.
It sounds just as crazy as it is. Have college students compete in classic house party competitions such as chugging (doesn’t have to be beer), spinning around a hockey stick, running on the ice, etc. You played the games…. be creative with it.
Mascot broomball game
Invite all the local mascots to come out to your game and compete in a classic broomball game. You can never go wrong with mascots, they’re a huge hit among fans. It’s even better when you plan out mishaps and have them holding each other back and tackling one another.
Easiest way to pull this one off is to get a plastic trash can lid or sled and a bungee cord. The contestants kneels down on the lid, straps a helmet on and then pull them back as far as you can and launch them towards the other end of the ice. If they knock down all the bowling pins they win!
This one is an oldie but goodie. Have a contestant with one puck and a stick at center ice and have them shoot for the small cutout in plywood put over the goal post. If they make it…. holy smokes does the crowd go wild. You gotta have a killer prize though for those who make it.
I’m sure you’ve seen the YouTube videos… How easy is it to pull of though? Super easy. You can buy these bubble balls at your local Walmart, I recommend picking up about six of them for 3v3 action. Then cut out a large puck shape from foam and spray paint it black. Then get some contestants, put em on ice, and let em’ have at it. The bigger the hits the big the crowd cheers.
We’ve seen it before but it never fails. Grab your mascot, contestants, and some inflatable chairs from the store and head to center ice. Place the chairs in the middle of the ice, cue the music, and have your contestants circle the chairs. Music stops and watch the fun unfold in front of you. One time we did this and had some guys out from the local air force base, these guys just went at it! I’m talking like throwing themselves against each other and the such. Our mascot didn’t have a chance.
And our 10th game and in my opinion the best one for 2nd intermission, Chuck A Puck
It’s a great way to raise money for a local charity or even your youth hockey programs. Fans can purchase rubber pucks from you out in the lobby for $5 which gets them five pucks. Then during the 2nd intermission you lay out a mat or bucket at center ice and have the fans throw the pucks out and try to land on the target. If they do then they win half the pot! It’s a classic game and is always sure to be a hit at your games.
Well there you have it, our top 10 intermission games to entertain your fans during a hockey game. Hopefully it gave you guys some ideas or at least a starting point to launch from. If you have any favorite games that you’ve seen or do yourself at your games feel free to leave a comment below and tell us about it!
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