2020 Memorial Cup to be held in Kelowna

Kelowna will officially host the hockey event

Kelowna will turn into a hockey hub from May 22 to 31, 2020 when it’s the host city for the Canadian Hockey League’s national championship tournament — something it hasn’t been since 2004.

Tom Dyas was in Calgary Tuesday for the Memorial Cup bid announcement, as chairperson of the bid committee that included Bruce Hamilton, Gavin Hamilton, Anne-Marie Hamilton, Mayor Colin Basran and Harvey Hubball.

“What an incredible honour it is to be standing here today to know that the Kelowna Rockets will host the 2020 Memorial Cup,” Dyas said, from the podium where the announcement was made.

“We cannot wait to welcome hockey fans to a unique event and that there hasn’t been like it anything else before it.”

Among the main criteria for teams bidding to host the Memorial Cup is guaranteeing a substantial financial return to the Western Hockey League and having adequate infrastructure in place, such as the arena and hotels.

READ MORE: KELOWNA NOW ONE OF THREE

Hamilton, the Rockets president and general manager, said with the Rockets footing the bill for the season-end championship, the club will offer a kickback of somewhere between $1.5 and $2 million to the WHL.

Local economic spin-off may be even greater.

With restaurants, hotels and other businesses in high demand for 10 days, it’s estimated the 2020 championship will pump a minimum of $12 to $15 million into the local economy.

Non-game events in the 2004 event included tents, displays and kiosks surrounding the arena, creating a bona fide, festival-like atmosphere and Hamilton said the Rockets plan to up the ante in 2020.

“We want to sell it as an entire downtown event,” said Hamilton. “We’ve included Tourism Kelowna and the City of Kelowna’s parks department (in the bid)…. they will be a part of making the event a bit bigger than it was in 2004. We want to spread it out beyond just in front of the arena, throughout the downtown. We envision Stuart Park having something, as well as the bandstand behind the Delta Grand.”

The idea, explained Hamilton, is that the tournament will become an event for the entire city to revel in.

“There will only be so many tickets for sale, so we have a whole group of people who won’t be in the building and we want to build an atmosphere outside so they will feel like they are a part of it,” he said.

Mayor Basran said that the next budget will include $225,000 for Memorial Cup events.

“It will be used for community events and to make sure it is welcoming to all residents,” he said.

“I think it’s fantastic. This is going to be a tremendous event, we will be showcased on a national stage and it will be a great boost to our local economy.”

And, at the heart of it all is the Memorial Cup, a trophy that is steeped in Canadian tradition and history.

“The trophy is 101 years old this year,” Hamilton said. “It’s in remembrance of soldiers in the early wars. It has a military component to it.”

And as the tournament has matured over the years, it’s been able to capture attention in a way that many others of its kind have not, by knitting together this country in sport.

RELATED: Kelowna now one of three vying for 2020 Memorial Cup tournament

To report a typo, email:
newstips@kelownacapnews.com
.


@KelownaCapNews
newstips@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

Just Posted

Prince Rupert Gas Transmission project searches for partners

TransCanada is renewing permits for its natural gas pipeline project to North Coast.

Coastal GasLink stops work to investigate archaeological find

OGC archaeologists are en route to the Houston-area site where Unist’ot’en report finding stone tools

All Native Basketball Tournament Day 5: Recap

Highlights and results from day 5 at the All Native Tournament

All Native Basketball Tournament Day 6: Preview

Look ahead to all the action scheduled for Feb. 16 at the All Native Tournament

Coastal GasLink prepares sites of construction work camps

Unist’ot’en condemn 14 ‘man camps’ housing 500-800 workers as threatening safety of women and children

VIDEO: Canada’s flag turns 54 today

The maple leaf design by George Stanley made its first appearance Feb. 15, 1965

Eight cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver outbreak

Coastal Health official say the cases stem from the French-language Ecole Jules Verne Secondary

Plecas won’t run in next election if B.C. legislature oversight reforms pass

B.C. Speaker and Abbotsford South MLA says he feels ‘great sympathy’ for Jody Wilson-Raybould

Workshop with ‘accent reduction’ training cancelled at UBC

The workshop was cancelled the same day as an email was sent out to international students

Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual touching

Accuser went to police, interviewed by Britian’s Daily Telegraph

Judge rules Abbotsford home must be sold after son tries to evict mom

Mom to get back down payment and initial expenses

Trump officially declares national emergency to build border wall

President plans to siphon billions from federal military construction and counterdrug efforts

Snow turns to slush, rain as it warms up across B.C.’s south coast

Some areas are already covered by more than half a metre of snow following three separate storms

Father to be charged with first-degree murder in Amber Alert case

11-year-old Riya Rajkumar was found dead in her father’s home in Brampton, Ontario

Most Read