The Carillon - ONLINE EDITION
By: Terry Frey
Posted: 09/3/2015 10:13 AM
The arrival of September, and the dawn of the hockey season, means the 2016 Steinbach Allan Cup host committee are getting back to work as next year’s Allan Cup, being staged in Steinbach, April 11-18, 2016, is now just seven and a half months away.
Not that the organizing committee was idle during the summer months. In late July the host Southeast Prairie Thunder, the reigning Allan Cup champions, hosted a sold out fund-raising golf tournament at Quarry Oaks.
This week Host Committee chair Jared Driedger announced that Grunthal Lumber would be the primary sponsor for next year’s national tournament in Steinbach. When Steinbach hosted the 2009 Allan Cup, Smitty’s was the title sponsor.
Driedger says securing the main sponsor for next year’s tournament was a big piece of the puzzle and now they can focus their efforts on securing additional corporate sponsors
The Prairie Thunder have always had a strong connection to both Grunthal and Steinbach, particularly with Thunder GM Marv Kornelsen hailing from Grunthal.
Grunthal Lumber owner Murray Rempel, who has always been a supporter of the Prairie Thunder in the past, said he looks at it as an opportunity to promote his business, which has 45 employees, and in turn helping to support the Thunder and the tournament. "It will help to get our name out more in the region."
"Another reason I got involved," said Rempel, with a grin, "is that Marv (Kornelsen) can be very persuasive."
Driedger said that they are also excited that two more Manitoba teams have come forward in attempts to earn a second berth at the Steinbach Allan Cup along with the host Prairie Thunder. Both the Ile des Chenes Northstars, who are also former Allan Cup champions, host team at the 2009 Allan Cup in Steinbach, and the Manitoba Lightning have indicated they will be icing a team year.
"With three teams in Manitoba," said Driedger, "it will help in the preparation with more competition, as well as ticket sales with another local team competing."
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