Just South of Minnewawa Lodge––located in the small town of Nisswa, Minnesota––you will find the city of Dodge Center, Minnesota. Home of the recognizable camp counselor, Mark Huber. Mark is on his fifth year as a counselor here at Minnesota Hockey Camps. He started working at the camp back in 2011 when he was just entering college at the age of 21. After taking a couple of summers off, he’s back in action here at camp, making the kids daily experience’s more enjoyable.
Mark grew up playing hockey for youth teams around his small town. Many of Mark’s hockey influences come from his mother’s side. Her family lived in White Bear Lake, MN and all four of her brothers played college hockey, which made their family holidays revolve around playing hockey. He played for a county team, since his high school Triton High School was too small to have a team of their own. Mark received numerous honors and awards throughout his high school career, such as the High School Hobey Baker in 2007, and was named the senior captain of his team.
After graduating high school in 2007, Mark wanted to take his skills to the next level but he wasn’t positive what was going to be offered to him. “I didn’t know a lot about the process of playing junior hockey, then going to college,” Mark recalls. That summer was spent finding out what organization was right for him. “Every weekend I was trying out for a new team. It was a crazy summer, let’s just say that.” He tried out for six teams (three in the NAHL and 3 in the MnJHL) and was cut from all of them. Finally, an opportunity to play led him to a trip to Las Vegas for a try-out with the Stars in the Western States Hockey League and a spot on their roster. As he was packing his car to drive to Nevada, the team folded because of a lack of finances. Mark however caught a break with a juniors team in Minnesota. They offered him a three-day tryout and he made the most of it, getting a second chance to play on a team called the St. Paul Lakers.
Mark’s next goal was to play college hockey. Two colleges were interested in 2009 after recruiters saw him at the MnJHL Christmas Showcase. He eventually went with St. Mary’s University on an academic scholarship but soon realized his expectations weren’t being met when it came to the skill level offered at the University. He explains, “At the time I thought they were recruiting me for a Varsity spot but actually had recruited 50 players for 28 spots. It was disheartening. I still had to try out for the team and I didn’t know that coming in.” Mark made the 28-man roster but was placed on the Junior Varsity. Having never dressed or played on the Varsity he ended the season playing 13 games on Junior Varsity with 11 points. “I loved the campus and the classroom atmosphere, but I didn’t want to be a JV player for four years.”
After he completed his freshman year with St. Mary’s, Mark made the decision to move from D-III NCAA to D-I ACHA hockey at Iowa State University. It proved to be the best thing he could have done for his college career. “It wasn’t a hard decision to make,” he says “it was all about finding my fit.” He moved from regular scratches early in the season to the first line, landing power play time with the Cyclones. Mark says the biggest benefit of Iowa State came from its size – there were more opportunities. “We’re playing 50 games at Iowa State instead of 25 games and the stands were filled with fans at every home game. I traveled a lot more than I did with St. Mary’s.” He noted that players in club hockey have skills comparable to the D-III level “People don’t know a lot about ACHA hockey and how much talent there is in that league.” Mark Said.
Huber not only led the Cyclones with an “A” on his jersey in 2012-13, he ended up one of Iowa State’s leading scorers, finishing third in points with 29 on the strength of 11 goals and a team-leading 18 assists. Huber achieved it while only playing occasionally on the power play, as he was instead used regularly on the penalty kill. This helped establish himself as an impact player and as one of the team’s top point getters as a junior.
After Mark graduated college in 2014, he found his way to Williston, ND to work in the oil field which was booming at the time. He worked as a Well-head technician which was a hard-blue collar job that pushed Mark each day to make sure his machines and co-workers were running safe and smoothly. Mark however had other plans about what he wanted to do in his future, and it was quite the opposite of what he was currently doing in the oil fields.
Mark wished to pursue a career in acting, which meant it was time to pack his bags, and head to Virginia Beach, Virginia to get his newest interest started. Mark has now been featured in the television show House of Cards, as well as a recurring role in Fox News channel “Legend & Lies.” Getting into the show business is tough but Mark seems to be doing just fine for a hobby that he picked up out of the blue. He plans to further his acting career little by little, while having fun doing so. He even has a page on the popular app IMDb, so if you would like to learn a little more about his acting career, then that is a great place to start.
It just goes to show that you don’t have to be an NHL player to be special in our books; we focus on developing great people. You never know where life will take you, whether it be to the oil fields of North Dakota, to the beaches of Virginia, our success stories all started at Minnesota Hockey Camps. We pride ourselves on building outstanding citizens, and Mark Huber could not be a better example of that.