WILLIAMSBURG – A local youth hockey player is fundraising for her trip to France and Italy for a hockey and educational tour.
Twelve-year-old Kloe Lewis grew up playing hockey in the South Dundas area before making the jump to play for the Rideau-St. Lawrence Kings girls Bantam “A” team.
Being only 12, Lewis’ skill has allowed her to play with girls who are a couple of years older than her.
Lewis and her father, Andy, travelled to Niagara Falls, N.Y. to tryout for the East Coast Selects. The Seaway District High School student will now travel to France and Italy in April with the team, participating in an all-star tournament and educational tour.
Lewis’ team will play four games in both France and Italy against teams from the United States, Latvia, Switzerland, Russia, Norway, Sweden and Finland.
The cost to participate for each player is expensive, according to Andy.
“It is up around $10,000,” he said. “We originally said no because of the cost. The more we read about it and the more people we talked to they said for us to try and get sponsors.”
Many local businesses have donated to Lewis and she has also received funding from the Champions for Kids program that the Upper Canada District School Board runs.
When she isn’t playing hockey, Lewis donates her time at the Pure Stride Hockey Camp in Kemptville, helping the camp’s instructor, Peter Cox, with the younger group of students.
Hockey has always been something Lewis has been passionate about since she began playing.
She started skating at the age of two in the CanSkate program in Winchester before climbing the levels in Morrisburg.
The skills Lewis developed while playing hockey in the local rinks had her on par with all top players at the tryouts for the International Select team. Players at the tryouts came from all over North America, including top programs in Buffalo and Boston.
“I just want to keep working my way up the levels of hockey,” she said. “I would like to play on the Canadian Olympic team someday.”
Donations can be made at the Bank of Montreal Morrisburg branch where there is a fund set up for Lewis.