SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — With KELOLAND caked in snow and ice, Saturday is fittingly Hockey Day South Dakota.

It’s the calm before the storm as the PREMIER Center is set to host five hockey games on Saturday for Hockey Day South Dakota.

“Hockey is growing so much, not only in Sioux Falls but across the state so it’s an opportunity for us to invite some kids and young adults here into the PREMIER Center, an opportunity to play and we’ve got a full day of games,” Stampede President Jim Olander said.

The puck drops at 8:30 a.m. with the first of four games showcasing youth and high school hockey.

“For us to bring a Mitchell and a Watertown in, an opportunity to play in the PREMIER Center, a place they normally wouldn’t get to play a game, we hope that it’s something they enjoy and something they’re going to treasure and remember for the rest of their playing days,” Olander said.

“We’re excited to be able to partner with the Stampede,” SDAHA Executive Director Jenni Wirkus said.

Jenni Wirkus is with the South Dakota Amateur Hockey Association, and says the kids aren’t the only ones eager to lace up their skates.

“It’s one of our highly requested games of the year, a lot of people want to get their chance at getting to officiate in the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center as well,” Wirkus said.

The day of games also helps fund a scholarship program through ticket sales and promotions.

“I believe last year it was around $2,500 to $3,000, so that’s a great donation from the Stampede to South Dakota Amateur Hockey,” Wirkus said.

“Every year we’re trying to do something different, trying to add to it and our goal is to hopefully make things bigger and better each and every year,” Olander said.

Hockey Day South Dakota schedule

  • 8:30 AM: Sioux Falls Squirts Blue 1 vs Brookings 1
  • 10 AM: Watertown vs Mitchell (Girls Varsity)
  • 12 PM: Watertown vs Mitchell (Boys JV)
  • 2 PM: Watertown vs Mitchell (Boys Varsity)
  • 6:05 PM: Sioux Falls Stampede vs. Omaha Lancers