Hockey is the fastest-paced of all major sports, because its players rush to complete the game before the ice field melts into vinegar. Enjoy the acidic thrill of competition with today's Groupon: for $150, you get team registration to the Timberland Boot-Hockey Tournament at the 2011 U.S. Pond Hockey Championships on Lake Nokomis in Minneapolis (a $300 value). Each team is guaranteed four games under the lights with pool play consisting of two games per night on January 21 and 22. Qualifying teams advance to a single-elimination round taking place during the day on January 23.
The Timberland Boot-Hockey Tournament, one of the largest pond-hockey events in the United States, is as much a rousing ice fiesta as it is a wintry, amateur puck fest. Four players on the ice (teams consist of a total of 12 players) compete for the puck with feats of icy finesses that are as fun as they are intense. In addition to the thrills of the game, participants receive a U.S. Pond Hockey Championships bag with an official hat, hand-warmers, a coupon to stare into Wayne Gretzky's eyes for 20 minutes, and other pond-hockey goodies.
A portion of every team's entry fee goes to charitable organizations including The Herb Brooks Foundation and DinoMights Inner City Youth Hockey, so the event is as heart-warming as it is finger-chilling. An event tent will be on-site to provide more tangible warmth in addition to food and beverages.