Hockey fans couldn’t contain their excitement for the arrival of the Mason City Toros, which joined the North Iowa Bulls as a minor league hockey team in Mason City earlier this year. Though if the teams don’t have players, hockey fans don’t have hockey.
Denise Williams is the co-coordinator of housing for both teams.
Though the two organizations nearly have all of the players housed, they need to house the rest and have extra beds for cuts and trades.
Billets house and support the players while they are away from home pursuing their dream. The homes must be within 30 minutes of Mason City, and players must have their own room. A misconception is players need to be in Mason City or Clear Lake. Williams says they currently have houses all over North Iowa, including Hampton and Sheffield. According to Williams, everyone 18 years or older in the house would have to pass a background check.
Billet families are given season tickets to both the Bulls and Toros, no matter what level player they house. Williams also mentioned that billets could house more than one player, and they can share rooms. The player will have money for food they will give the billet family when they arrive. The Players will arrive towards the end of this month and will leave following the season. The NAHL (Bulls) and NA3HL (Toros) will have different schedules, with the Toros season ending in early spring and the NAHL season will end later in the spring.
The North Iowa Bulls and Toros are owned and operated by F&S Management. The Toros will be in their first season after taking over for the Bulls, the reigning NA3HL champions. The Bulls took over the Amarillo (Texas) Bulls’ membership place in the NAHL, allowing F&S Management to have both junior hockey teams in the same location, and playing out of the newly opened Mason City Multipurpose Arena. It also alleviated a contract dispute between the Amarillo Bulls (F&S Management) and the City of Amarillo to continue using the Amarillo Civic Center. The Bulls’ NAHL membership had been in Amarillo for 11 seasons.
To help house players for the upcoming season, contact Williams at 641-425-5533 or Tara Bissig at 641-430-8230 or email them at [email protected]
Zarren Egesdal is the sports director for Coloff Media radio stations KIOW and KHAM. He can be reached daily at [email protected] or 641-585-1073. Do you have a story idea? Feel free to contact him. Zarren is an award-winning journalist providing coverage to all area schools. You will hear Zarren calling games as the ‘voice of the Forest City Indians’ on KIOW (107.3), the Indians’ flagship station throughout the year.