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Aug. 1
1963 - Leona Cox Community School breaks ground in Canyon Country [story]
Leona Cox


| Monday, Jun 28, 2021
West Ranch Hockey Club team members Luke Marchant,15, left, and Robert Ludwig, 16, remove an acacia plant from it's pot as they join their teammates who planted 38 ground cover plants at Pamplico Park in Santa Clarita on Saturday, 062621. Dan Watson/The Signal

The Cube holds a special place in the hearts of the dozen members of the West Ranch hockey team who planted 38 acacias at Pamplico Park on Saturday morning to thank the city of Santa Clarita for keeping the ice rink open and operational.

In May, the team won its first league championship. The win was on home ice at The Cube – a “second home,” according to the hockey players, who spent most of last season practicing in Simi Valley.

West Ranch Hockey Club team member Pierce Marchant,16, left, removes an acacia plant from its pot as City of Santa Clarita Park Supervisor German Garcia assists during the planting of 38 ground cover plants at Pamplico Park in Santa Clarita on Saturday, 062621. Dan Watson/The Signal

“This our little project to give back and say thank you,” said Alec Stefanelli, a rising senior at Learning Post Academy, expressing his appreciation to the city for saving the ice rink.

Stefanelli and teammates Logan Bell and Patrick Dunleavy shoveled mulch out of a truck mid-morning after digging holes earlier in the day for the drought-tolerant plants in a planter near the park’s exit.

“It’s been kind of hot, but pretty fun,” said Bell, a rising senior at Academy of the Canyons, of the day’s work.

The team’s philanthropic project was the second time teammates have been together as a team off the ice since the state reopened.

The team reached out to the city of Santa Clarita, which asked the hockey players to help with this beautification project.

West Ranch Hockey Club team members look on as City of Santa Clarita maintenance worker Kyle Patterson. left, and Park Supervisor German Garcia, right, demonstrate the proper depth and width for planting the 38 acacia ground cover plants at Pamplico Park in Santa Clarita on Saturday, 062621. Dan Watson/The Signal

Kyle Patterson, a city maintenance worker, and German Garcia, a park supervisor, showed the team how to plant an acacia before turning the work over to the high school hockey players.

Patterson said the planter once contained grass, followed by mulch during the drought.

“They spread 20 feet each direction,” he said of the acacias. “It’s more of a ground cover.”

Stefanelli was excited for the opportunity to strengthen team bonds through the morning’s work.

“It’s nice to build these bonds that we have now,” said Stefanelli. “It’s kind of been special for us because we watched all the guys playing high school and now, we’re here. It’s nice to make it a reality.”

Tony and Sue Stefanelli, Alec’s parents, along with other team parents, provided a helping hand throughout the morning.

West Ranch Hockey Club team members plant some of the 38 ground cover plants at Pamplico Park in Santa Clarita on Saturday, 062621. Dan Watson/The Signal

“It’s going very, very productive,” said Tony of the work. “It’s great to give back to the city that helped to give these guys back their ice rink.”

The team recently held tryouts at The Cube and will start practicing on Aug. 2 to prepare for the new season in September.

“It just seems the year’s off to a good start,” said Sue Stefanelli. “Things are looking brighter compared to a year ago.”

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SCV NewsBreak
LOCAL NEWS HEADLINES
Friday, Jul 30, 2021
Friday COVID-19 Roundup: SCV Cases Total 29,884; L.A. County Continues Efforts Vaccinating Homeless
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Friday five new deaths and 3,606 new cases of COVID-19 countywide, with 29,884 total cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
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