Organizers of the national Play On! street hockey festival, and The City of Kelowna, are delighted to announce that they will host an event in Kelowna May 6-7, 2017.
Play On! – sponsored by the CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada – has become recognized as a uniquely Canadian outdoor street hockey tournament & festival attracting hundreds of thousands of Canadians annually from coast to coast. Now entering its 8th season in the Okanagan valley, nearly two hundred teams and thousands of participants, family and friends now plan one spring weekend at this event in Kelowna annually, enjoying the world class views and local hospitality between and around their games.
One of those looking forward to the street hockey action is Kelowna Mayor, Colin Basran, "It's wonderful news that Hockey Night in Canada’s Play On! is coming back to Kelowna for another year," he said. "It's such an important event for the City and the region, especially for the youth in our community. The spring just wouldn't be the same without it!" Basran is currently in talks with local organizers to once again participate in the celebrity game tentatively scheduled for May 6th at noon.
The Play On! 2017 event in Kelowna will be held at and around Prospera Place, as part of Canada’s 150th anniversary. The two-day competition is open to individuals of any age or skill level who organize into self-selected teams consisting of as few as four or as many as nine players. There are divisions and categories for individuals/teams of any skill level, including for those who may be new to Canada and who may have never played any form of hockey before. An inclusive event that uniquely combines Canadian sport and culture - more than 50% of participants in this event across Canada have historically not played ice hockey, including eight members of the Montreal Red Lite – the current men’s national street hockey champions. Anyone can go to www.playon.ca and create their own team to play in one of more than thirty separate divisions offered for boys, girls, men and women. The event also includes a Corporate division, with proceeds donated to the Okanagan Boys & Girls Clubs. Championship t-shirts, medallions, and other prizes are awarded to all divisions winners.
“We are extremely excited to return to host this event in Kelowna at Prospera Place,” said Commissioner Scott Hill. “We are particularly grateful to the City of Kelowna, and local Corporate Partners that include the Kelowna Rockets, Choices Markets, West Coast Apparel, and Play it Again Sports who make this event possible in the community each season.”
One of the key contributors to keeping Play On! in Kelowna long term is local supermarket chain, Choices Markets and their Director of Vendor Relations, Richard Lockhart, “We had such an amazing time being the title sponsor of Play On! Kelowna in 2016 that we just had to come back,” says Lockhart, “not just for another chance at Corporate Division glory, but because of the sense of health, sport, and community the event brings to the Okanagan.”
The Play On! program is sponsored nationally by CBC, Booster Juice, JVCKenwood, VIA Rail, and Sportsnet. Registration is now open at www.playon.ca and teams will be accepted until the event is full (please note that space is limited and that this event has historically sold out prior to the registration deadline). Opportunities for volunteers and referees are also now available at www.playon.ca
About Hockey Night in Canada’s Play On!
Hockey Night in Canada’s Play On! is Canada’s largest sports festival, featuring recreational and competitive street hockey tournament divisions for both genders, all skill levels, and all ages. Since the program's inception in 2003, more than two million Canadians have ‘taken back the streets’ from coast to coast through involvement in one of the one hundred and fifty-five (155) Play On! events held to date. The events have collectively included participation from many prominent Canadians and hundreds of professional hockey players, including current NHL players Connor McDavid, Nathan McKinnon, and Okanagan valley resident Curtis Lazar. These large-scale, highly organized street hockey events celebrate the game of hockey in its purest form, in a wholesome, fun-filled atmosphere that makes kids feel like NHL pros and helps adults feel like kids again. All interested participants can visit www.playon.ca for tournament information, to register a team, and more.
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