Bid by Oakville Blades to host national championship gets support from council


Published March 1, 2023 at 4:23 pm

The Oakville Blades have submitted a bid to host the 2024 Centennial Cup national championship tournament at Sixteen Mile Complex. TOWN OF OAKVILLE PHOTO

Town Council is throwing its support behind a bid by the Oakville Blades to host the 2024 Centennial Cup at Sixteen Mile Sports Complex.

At a meeting on Monday (Feb. 27), council approved to have staff report back with sponsorship opportunities and options before the national junior ‘A’ championship tournament is awarded.

Hockey Canada is expected to make an announcement on the winning bid this month.

The 11-day, 10-team tournament is held every May with the championship game broadcast on TSN.

In 2022, Estevan, Saskatchewan hosted the national event and committed over $150,000 over two years to be top sponsors after being awarded the tournament.

The motion, supported by Ward 2 Councillors Ray Chisholm and Cathy Duddeck, says the 2024 Centennial Cup would attract a minimum of 42,500 spectators and have over 3082 hotel room night. Hockey Canada predicts the economic impact on the team awarded the bid will upwards of $5 million.

Hosting the 2024 Centennial Cup would give the Town national exposure and deliver economic spin-offs and benefits for local restaurants, businesses and hospitality industry.

“I think this is a very high level program and event that would be wonderful to have in Oakville,” said Chisholm. “It’s going to be an exciting event and I’m hoping we can facilitate it.”

The motion points out that the state-of-the-art Sixteen Mile facility is the ideal location to host the national tournament. It offers all the amenities needed to comfortably host all 10 participating teams and the thousands of spectators.

Chisholm said this is why the Oakville complex was built, to host national and international events.

Events like the upcoming 2023 PointsBet Curling Invitational in September or the Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling Masters Tournament held this past December.

“This is a prime example of having what I call a Canada-wide event at the centre,” said Chisholm.

“This is another opportunity and it’s also good for tourism for Oakville in respect of a lot of teams coming in which will come with parents and team representatives and so forth.”

The Oakville Blades play in the Ontario Junior Hockey League.

This year’s Centennial Cup tournament is taking place in Portage la Prairie, MB from May 11 to 21.

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