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St. Cloud Youth Hockey Association coach Duane Koepp receives Herb Brooks Youth Hockey Hall of Fame Award

He has been a coach in the association since 1976 and has spent the last 25 years coaching junior mites, who are ages 5-6

Duane Koepp talking.jpg
Duane Koepp talks about his coaching career with St. Cloud Youth Hockey Association after being named the recipient of the Herb Brooks Youth Hockey Hall of Fame Award on July 25, 2022, in Blaine, Minn. He received the honor after the Herb Brooks Celebrity Golf Classic at Victory Links Golf Course.
Submitted photo

BLAINE, Minn. — A longtime youth hockey coach in St. Cloud received the Herb Brooks Youth Hockey Hall of Fame Award after the Herb Brooks Foundation Celebrity Golf Classic on Monday, July 25.

Duane Koepp has been a coach for the St. Cloud Youth Hockey Association since 1976. The association came into existence in 1974.

Koepp has spent the last 25 years as the lead coach for the junior mite program, which is for players ages 5-6. That is the first age group for youth hockey players and includes a lot of beginning skating instruction.

Koepp "has not only helped all of those players, but coaches like myself, learn how to play, work and have fun in the game," SCYHA coach and The Rink Live's Mick Hatten said in introducing Koepp. "When he's talking to junior mites in a large group or one-on-one, he gets down on one knee so that he's talking to them at their level.

"I'm not sure I've ever heard Duane raise his voice, much less yell, at a player. And I've never seen him in a bad mood around the kids and he brings an upbeat attitude, inspires enthusiasm from the kids as each practice starts and gives clear direction and instruction to everything he does."

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Koepp also helps organize and plays in an Oldtimers hockey league in St. Cloud that plays on Wednesdays and Sundays.

Duane and his wife, Kim, live in St. Cloud. The family also supports hockey through the Brian Koepp Memorial Fund, which sponsors game day program ads and equipment for youth hockey players. Brian was the son of Duane and Kim and he died in 2002. The couple also has a daughter, Wendy VanCamp. She is married to Nathan VanCamp and they have three children — Allie, Bennett and Landon. Bennett and Landon play youth hockey in Orono.

The Herb Brooks Foundation has established an internet-based, Minnesota Youth Hockey Hall of Fame. People highly devoted to youth hockey development are nominated and inducted into the Hall at the annual awards celebration.

Duane Koepp group.JPG
From left, The Rink Live's Mick Hatten, Dan Brooks (son of Herb Brooks), Duane Koepp and Herb Brooks Foundation executive director Jon Cherney after Koepp received the Herb Brooks Youth Hockey Hall of Fame Award in Blaine, Minn. Koepp has been a coach in the St. Cloud Youth Hockey Association since 1976.
Submitted photo

Minnesota Youth Hockey Hall of Fame members

2022 — Duane Koepp

2021 — The Strelow Family

2019 — Matt Olson

2018 — Bob Suter

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2017 — The Brodt Family

2016 — Steve "Moose" Younghans

2015 — Bill Butters

2014 — Chuck Grillo

2013 — Larry Hendrickson

2012 — Janet Marvin

2011 — Jim McDonough

Cal, Tut and Jack Marvin

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Rudy Krampotich

Stan Hubbard

2005 — Wes Barrette

Related Topics: THE RINK LIVE
Mick Hatten is a reporter and editor for Forum News Service and helps manage TheRinkLive.com, a website dedicated to hockey. He began working for Forum Communications in November 2018 and has covered St. Cloud State University hockey since 2010. A graduate of St. Cloud State, he has more than 30 years of experience as a journalist and has been a youth hockey coach since 2014. mhatten@forumcomm.com
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