By Tyler Renaud
Kraft and CBC are making sure to deliver on all their promises to the community of Stirling-Rawdon by bringing the NHL to the little town.
Kraft Hockeyville is a nation-wide competition to find some of Canada’s craziest hockey fans in the many of Canada’s small towns. Stirling-Rawdon was named Hockeyville for 2012 beating out West Kelowna, British Columbia; Amos, Quebec; Yarmouth, Nova Scotia and Duck Lake Saskatchewan. They received one hundred thousand dollars to renovate their community center, a visit from NHL alumni, hockey clinics, a Stanley Cup Parade and an NHL exhibition. However, the NHL lockout that erased the first half of the regular season also erased the game between The Toronto Maple Leafs and Columbus Blue Jackets that the town was awarded.
The cancellation of their exhibition game would not hamper the spirits of the people in Stirling-Rawdon as the town still celebrated their victory with Lord Stanley’s Cup and NHL alum. Even without the excitement of NHL hockey there was still a lot to do and see like a fun fair, autograph session, a skating clinic, music, a parade and a celebrity hockey game. Participating in the event were many former NHL players like Rob Ray (Buffalo), Brad May (Buffalo), PJ Stock (Boston), Brad Marsh (Toronto) and even CBC analysist Ron MacLean.
Along with the festivities the towns of Stirling and Rawdon were awarded even further for their understanding and patience about the lost NHL game. Kraft and CBC also donated 10, 000 dollars to the local food bank, 25, 000 tires to the tire drive and 50 full sets of hockey equipment. The loss of the NHL game did not overshadow the towns victory said Hockeyville Chairperson Cindy Brandt.
“Hockeyville was not about a hockey game it was about sustaining our arena,” she said.
Kraft and CBC are still going to make good on all their promise despite all they have already done. It was announced during game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals that Stirling would get their game September 14th. This comes as great news to Chairperson Cindy Brandt who says she’s relieved that all the community’s hard work will be rewarded and they can celebrate with an NHL game.
The time around they will host a matchup between former division rivals Washington Capitals and the Winnipeg Jets as the Toronto Maple Leafs already had all their exhibitions games booked. Despite that the anticipation is growing Cindy Brandt told me,
“People are excited, we are getting lots of phone calls asking where they can get tickets and putting their names on waiting lists for when the tickets become available.”
The excitement isn’t exclusive to just the community and its people as Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff said in a press release,
“We look forward to facing off against our former divisional rival, the Washington Capitals, as well as visiting the community of Stirling-Rawdon in September.”
Ticket information for the Sept. 14 game will be available soon. Check www.stirlinghockeyville.com or www.facebook.com/stirlinghockeyville for updates