Newsletters A historical archive of the Tightening the Laces District Newsletter can be found on the Newsletter Page.


Officiating Registration is Open for the 2014-2015 Season

USA Hockey has opened officiating registration for the 2014-2015 season!

In order to participate, please visit, and read and follow the instructions.  If you complete the National Registration process, you will be directed to USA Hockey's Seminar Registration system to choose your seminar.

If you have questions about the registration process, the seminar schedule, or changes in registration requirements for the 2014-2015 season, please post a question to our Facebook page,, tweet to us @aaharefs, contact a member of the District Staff or a Regional Coordinator,

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Steve Meyer Named 2014 Atlantic District Official of the Year

I would like to let everyone know that Steve Meyer has been selected as the AAHA Official of the Year for 2014.  Many of us know Steve and the countless hours that he has spent as a seminar coordinator, assignor, evaluator, mentor and on ice official.

His commitment to giving new officials a chance along with his take-pride attitude are just a few examples of his character.

I will thank Steve for his time and present the award to him on Saturday, June 21 at the AAHA Annual District Meeting in Jamesburg NJ.

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USA Hockey Officials Meet NHL Officials at Hockey Weekend Across America Games

USA Hockey Officials Eric Sailor (Sewell, NJ), Charlie Van Kula (Radnor, PA), Ryan Siegel (Dayton, NJ), and Bobby Esposito (Bridgewater, NJ) were chosen to represent the young officials from the Atlantic District at NHL games that were held during Hockey Weekend Across America.

Eric and Charlie attended the Philadelphia Flyers - New York Rangers game on March 1 in Philadelphia.  They were able to visit with NHL Officials Brian Murphy, Dave Jackson, Gord Dwyer, and Matt MacPherson, both in the locker room prior to the game and at center ice during the National Anthem.

Ryan Siegel and Bobby Esposito Meet the NHL Officials Before the NJ Devils - San Jose Sharks Game

Ryan and Bobby visited NHL officials Tony Sericolo, Greg KimmerlyDan O'Rourke, and Jonny Murray at the New Jersey Devils - San Jose Sharks game on March 2 in Newark.

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Ian Walsh Referees at the 2014 Winter Olympics

Congratulations to Ian Walsh who is a referee at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi Russia.

Ian's schedule for the the Men's Olympic Hockey Tournament is:

  • Thursday, February 13, Finland vs Austria, 3:00am Eastern Time, Bolshoy / NBC Sports Network
  • Saturday, February 15, Sweden vs Latvia, 12:00 noon Eastern Time, Shayba / NBC Sports Network
  • Sunday, February 16, Austria vs Norway, 3:00am Eastern Time, Bolshoy / USA Network

Ian's comments on the Olympics:

In USA Hockey Officials Reflect on Their Path to Sochi, when asked what it was about officiating that made him choose it as a career and have the Olympics as a goal, Ian said, "I've always enjoyed the challenge of learning and improving. Every game, every night presents a different challenge mentally and physically. I love the intensity of the game and the competitiveness of the players and officials in ice hockey."

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Jason Cleck Built A Rink That Got The Patriot-News' Attention

Jason and Andrew Cleck's rink made news throughout Central Pennsylvania today.

Several years of rink building in his backyard have made USA Hockey official Jason Cleck (Palmyra, PA) well known in the Atlantic District officiating community as an expert on maintaining outdoor ice quality without refrigeration-- often in challenging conditions.  Now his email to Deb Kiner, content administrator at for the Patriot-News, has resulted in an article that tells the world what he's been telling us.

According to the article, Jason pointed out that backyard ice skating rinks are common in the midstate area of Pennsylvania.  In response to a previous article posted by Deb about skating on backyard rinks in Delaware County that implied this was unusual, Jason said, "That's not news up here! We've been building one at my place in Palmyra for years.  My rink is one of many just in my area."

To which Kliner said, "Who knew?"

Jason and Andrew's friends in officiating all knew about his rink, and had seen quite a few photos of it.  But, congratulations on well-deserved regional recognition.  You guys deserve it.

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