It looks like the fun has already started for the Rogers Hometown Hockey Tour coming to Salmon Arm in March.
In September, it was announced that Salmon Arm would be one of 25 communities hosting Sportsnet hosts Ron MacLean and Tara Slone as they make their way across the country, celebrating local hockey as well as the sport’s biggest stars.
On Monday, Coun. Debbie Cannon, the council liaison on the local committee, announced that Rogers Hometown Hockey has awarded the city with a dual purpose Kompani hockey net/basketball hoop combination.
“We don’t think all the communities hosting Rogers Hometown Hockey are getting one so we’re excited about that,” Cannon said.
Organizers discussed where to put it and eventually decided on Jackson Park in Canoe, Cannon says. It has the required surface and nothing exists there for an older age group, plus city staff considered it a good choice. The net is expected to be installed in early January.
The Hometown Hockey Tour comes to Salmon Arm March 8 and 9.
When tour officials came to Salmon Arm in the summer to look at possible locations for all the weekend festivities, they chose Marine Park, Cannon says.
Although details of the weekend are still being finalized, MacLean and Slone will be onsite for the broadcast of an NHL game from the Sportsnet Mobile Studio on Sunday night. The March 9 game will see the Calgary Flames play host to the Vegas Golden Knights.
Cannon says huge screens will be set up around the mobile studio for watching the game.
“They bring in lots of bells and whistles and lots of interactive stuff… It’s a pretty big deal and there are lots of festival type things that will be happening down at Marine Park.”
She says the festivities will include entertainers and a parade and a component for minor hockey, perhaps a fundraising barbecue. There will also be something for one of the elementary schools.
Coinciding with the Hometown Hockey Tour and adding to the hockey celebrations is an “absolutely huge” Bantam tourney in Salmon Arm. Cannon said she had to tell the SportsNet people to book their hotel rooms right away, as they would soon be taken over by minor hockey.
The Rogers Hometown Hockey Tour website invites the public to come enjoy “the ultimate NHL fan experience.”
“Join us for a weekend festival of hockey – stories and activities for the whole family.”