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Outdoor Pond Hockey in North Mankato, Minnesota

Pond Hockey

The 10th annual Anthony Ford Pond Hockey Classic

Spring Lake Park

North Mankato, Minnesota

In the State of Hockey, taking it outdoors and playing on a frozen lake is the ultimate grass roots experience that needs to be included in your hockey schedule this year.  The AF99 Pond Hockey Classic is an annual tradition that will create memories of a lifetime. Spring Lake Park sits just below the bluff in beautiful lower North Mankato and is a wonderful setting for pond hockey.  

The Anthony Ford Pond Hockey Classic takes place on Saturday, January 27, 2018 (Adult play) and Sunday, January 28, 2018 (Youth play).  We feature 12 expanded NiceRinks on a great pond that is sheltered from the wind. 

This is not a USA Hockey or Minnesota Hockey sanctioned event.

The event is free to the public and includes viewing from the pier, a sledding hill for kids, hospitality area serving food and refreshments including beer and wine, warming houses and plenty of parking. Teams of all levels are welcome.

Enter off Hwy. 169 at Webster Ave.(by Best Western) Follow Webster Ave. Take a left at Sherman St., 1block then Right on McKinley. Parking is also available off Webster Ave.  

2018 Team Entry Fees

Click on "DIVISIONS" tab or the link above for more information before registering


Adult Team: $300   

Discounted price if Pre-registered by 12/31/17 = $270

     • 6 player maximum per team 

     • 3 on 3 play

     • 3 game guarantee

     • 12 NiceRinks

     • No goalies, modified nets


Youth Team: $180  

Discounted price if Pre-Registered by 12/31/17 = $150

     • 8 players maximum per team

     • 4 on 4 play

     • 3 game guarantee

     • 12 NiceRinks

     • No goalies, modified nets


• $500 Rink Sponsors receive $100 discount on team fee.

• No Refund for weather related issues.  You may receive credit for next year.



What to expect down at the pond...

At the Anthony Ford Pond Hockey Classic, we promote a fun and competitive day at the rink.  After your manager registers your team, check out the warming houses and hospitality shelter.  We will be serving food and refreshments including beer & wine.  

In pick-up hockey fashion, there are written and unwritten rules.  We expect the players to decide the right way to play the game.  Please be prepared to engage in a positive display of honesty and integrity.

Divisional play is an important part of a great game day experience.  We will do our best to provide divisions for all ages and skill levels.  4 team minimum and 12 team maximum for each Division.  For more information, click on Divisions tab.

Game officials will be provided.  Their priorities, in order, will be 1. keep score 2. start/stop game 3. keep an eye out for fair/unfair play.  The expectation is ultimately for the players to respect and adhere to the rules of the game. For more information click on the Pond Hockey Rules tab.

Although weather ultimately dictates conditions, we feel our lake provides exceptional pond hockey rinks.  We have 12 rinks with the latest professional NiceRink boards.  Our small pond is sheltered and it freezes fast with less cracks.  We will be flooding prior to both events and will do our best to have good ice.

Thank You for participating.  What a great way to support a worthy cause!

Brought to you by:

Sponsored by Kato Glass

Kato Glass

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Sponsored by Mankato Motors

Mankato Motors

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Sponsored by Radio Mankato

Radio Mankato

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Contact Us

Questions on the Pond Hockey Classic? Contact Brady Peters at 507-382-6480 or at 

Questions on Sponsorships? Contact Daniel Sprague at (507) 380-2718 or e-mail Dan at


Registration is now OPEN!

Click here to register your team

Deadline for the "Pre-registration" discount is midnight December 31, 2017


Registration Deadline is Mid-night Monday January 22, 2018


Comments and Suggestions

We want to hear from you. Your comments and suggestions will help us improve your game day experience. Click the link below to make a comment. All reasonable suggestions will be considered.

Hockey News

2018 Anthony Ford Pond Hockey Classic

11/01/2017, 8:30am CDT
By Admin

AF99 is celebrating its 10th anniversary!

Dear Friends of the Pond,

Minnesota's hockey season is underway and as we embrace the cold, we eagerly await the freeze of our favorite ponds and local rinks. The 2 new outdoor rinks at Spring Lake Park in lower North Mankato will surely become a favorite as the Anthony Ford Pond Hockey Classic celebrates its 10th anniversary on January 27,28. 

We are excited to announce some exciting events surrounding the weekend pond hockey classic:

Friday, November 17 - Our annual silent auction takes place at the Verizon Center during the MSU Mankato Mavericks vs. Bowling Green WCHA matchup.  We have lots of great items!

Thursday, Jan. 25 - Great timing for Mankato's intracity high school hockey showdown as the Mankato West Scarlets host the Mankato East Cougars at the Verizon Center in downtown Mankato. Girls game @ 5:15, Boys @ 7:15pm

Friday, Jan. 26 - East/West alumni outdoor game on the Anthony Ford Rink at Spring Lake Park.

Friday, Jan. 26 - Chad Brownlee Benefit Concert Chad, a Maverick and former NHL draft pick will be performing at the Mankato Brewery.  He is an award winning Canadian country music singer, songwriter and philanthropist.  During Anthony's courageous battle, the Maverick hockey team befriended him and Chad wrote an inspiring song called "The Hero I See".  Check out his most recent work at More details to come...

Saturday, Jan. 27 Adult men and women will compete in 5 divisions of play in the 10th annual AFPHC.  For more information, click on the pond hockey page.

Saturday, Jan. 27 Across the river at Verizon Center, catch Maverick Hockey as they host the USA National Team Development Program.  

Sunday, Jan. 28 Youth take over the pond. Divisions for mini-mite, mite, advanced mite, squirt/U10, pee wee/U12 & bantam aged players.

Our 12 NiceRinks have been expanded to give you a great game day experience.  Our small pond is nestled along the Minnesota River bluff at Spring Lake Park in beautiful lower North Mankato.  The park is protected from the wind and features multiple warming houses, hospitality area and 2 new outdoor rinks.  Minutes from the city center of Mankato/North Mankato you will find many many hotels, restaurants and shopping.  

Proceeds from the events support Therapeutic Advances in Childhood Leukemia and help keep hockey affordable in our area.

We'll see you at the rink!



Spring Lake Park

01/28/2017, 8:00am CST
By Admin

A wonderful setting for pond hockey

Just around the bend of the Minnesota River Valley, Spring Lake Park in beautiful lower North Mankato, plays host to the Anthony Ford Pond Hockey Classic. The downtown location has proven to be perfect for pond hockey. The park is nestled along the bluff which shelters the lake from wind, making the coldest winter day seem more like a great day for a skate in the park.

The park features a small lake, sledding hill, outdoor rinks, ample parking, hospitality area, warming shelters, restrooms & fishing pier for viewing.  The Anthony Ford Fund and the Mankato Area Foundation together pledged $100,000 to the upgrades of the outdoor rinks and warming house.  The future warming house plan has been upgraded and will serve as a community center and and will help facilitate the North Mankato city pool. 

Spring Lake Park also has close proximity to hotels, bars & restaurants. The Verizon Wireless Center, which is just across the river, is the home of Maverick hockey where you can catch Minnesota State in WCHA action.

Outdoor Rink Plan at Spring Lake

01/23/2017, 3:15pm CST
By admin

AF99 and Mankato Area Foundation pledge $100,000 towards improvements

As part of our mission to help keep hockey affordable in our area, the Anthony Ford Fund pledged $50,000 towards the Outdoor Rink Improvement Plan at Spring Lake Park In North Mankato. The Mankato Area Foundation has since pledged another $50,000 to help us reach our goal for the project.

Since moving the Pond Hockey Classic from Lake Washington to Spring Lake Park in 2015, AF99 and the City of North Mankato have been partnering to make improvements to the park.  In the summer of 2017, we will complete a project that will bring 2 new outdoor rinks with concrete surface for easier maintenance and additional opportunities for year-round use. Warming House improvements with concessions are also part of the plan.

With the shortage of indoor ice and the lack of warming houses in our area, we feel this project is important to help create affordable opportunities to skate and play hockey.  This will be a high quality outdoor destination that will help grow the hockey culture in our area.

Thank You to the City of North Mankato, the Mankato Area Foundation, The Glen A. Taylor Foundation, and everyone who has supported the Anthony Ford Fund through the years. We hope to see you at the rink!

Thank You

12/15/2015, 4:30pm CST
By admin

A special Thank You

The Anthony Ford Fund Committee members would like to put out a special thank you to the City of North Mankato and their staff and the Business on Belgrade Group for their assistance and cooperation in making our move to Spring Lake Park seamless. We are excited about the new venue and the possibilities it brings for bigger and better events to come.