Regular season design contests suspended

There's bad news for IceHL fans who were hoping to take part in the many design contests planned for the 2014-15 regular season.

As commissioner of our league, my excitement got the better of me this fall when I announced an ambitious plan to hold of series of design contests during the IceHL season. My hope was to extend the great engagement we had over the summer.

The community created a great logo and specialty jersey for the ABC Cup several weeks ago, but it did not get the kind of involvement we see during offseason contests. But this is very understandable.

The majority of designers who take part tend to be high school and college students who are just beginning to hone their craft. They take advantage of the great feedback offered by the large and diverse Icethetics community. 

As students whose schedules are defined by classes, these designers tend to have more spare time during the summer, when we typically hold these contests. When fall rolls around, they go back to spending most of their time studying. As such, their ability to spend any free time participating here dramatically decreases this time of year.

But I'm not suspending the rest of our planned contests because of designer availability. Ultimately, it comes down to me. My job comes with different demands at certain times of the year. Much like the student designers, my free time decreases in the fall and winter. And by its nature, Icethetics only gets updated when I have free time — in which case the IceHL always takes a backseat to the Blog and the Concepts page.

Basically, my eyes were bigger than my stomach here. I thought I could find time to run all these contests and keep the league vital from a branding perspective during the hockey season. But that has just not been realistic, unfortunately.

That being said, notice I'm talking about "suspending" these contests rather than canceling them. I would like to revisit our planned contests — particularly for the "outdoor" Ice Classic Series — during the offseason. The designs could be "retroactive" for the 2014-15 season or we could simply do something new for the 2015-16 season.

Either way, it'll have to wait until late spring or summer. I'm still planning to expand the IceHL World by two teams for total of 10 next season, so we'll have that.

I also want to publicly apologize to the four guys selected for the new IceHL Design Council. They're certainly not getting what they expected from the experience at this point. I'm planning to extend their first term to make sure they do get the most out of it.

I appreciate their patience and yours with me on this. I know you've come to expect a lot more from Icethetics and from me, but there's only so much I can do. Thank you for understanding.

Meanwhile, on the fantasy hockey side, things are going great! We added a couple of new GMs during the season and the teams have been fascinating to watch. And that's all I can ask for!