Story by Steve Erickson
The hockey world continues to expand with their games being played in various areas, such as the PJHL Richmond Sockeyes recently playing two games in Gibsons against Port Moody and Grandview.
This is the second time that the league has played games in Gibsons with two others being played prior to Christmas with both events being played as a possible expansion in Gibsons.
Time will tell if that happens, but we do know that the league did announce that they have expanded to Port Coquitlam and as of air-time no team name has yet to be named.
The BCHL recently held their first outdoor game in Penticton at the South Okanagan Events Centre January 20th that featured players from all league teams.
Now we are hearing that the BCHL are playing yet another game that will feature their 2023 Road Show in Burns Lake on the traditional land of the Ts’il Kaz Koh First Nation Feb. 18 and 19 on Family Day long weekend,
The game will be played at the Tom Forsyth Memorial Arena, where the Prince George Spruce Kings and Salmon Arm Silverbacks will play two regular-season games.
The league is once again partnering with the Lake Babine Nation who will co-host the event.
Prince George and Salmon Arm were supposed to participate in the event last February, but it was postponed due to COVID-19.
BCHL CEO Chris Hebb mentioned “We were disappointed to have to postpone our event last season and we are excited to announce these new dates and begin planning with our partners at the Lake Babine Nation, who have been a great group to work with.”
“The goal of this event is to bring high-level hockey to an area of the province that does not get to experience it every day and we can’t wait to get to Burns Lake and show that community what the BCHL is all about.”
This past year the Lake Babine Nation announced that all surrounding First Nations have agreed to work together in support of the event, including which include Wet’suwet’en First Nation, Cheslatta Carrier Nation, Nee Tahi Buhn Indian Band, Skin Tyee Nation and Ts’il Kaz Koh First Nation.
Chief Murphy Abraham of the Lake Babine Nation mentioned “I humbly acknowledge and appreciate the BCHL’s commitment to keeping the Road Show in the Village of Burns Lake and on the unceded traditional territory of the Ts’il Kaz Koh First Nation and we made a tough decision to postpone this event last year due to the pandemic, but now with restrictions lifted, the show must go on.”
“Some of the goals for this event are to get reconnected with one another, build on the positive family atmosphere within the communities, inspire the children and youth with the sport of hockey and to manifest the culture and traditions on all levels. Lake Babine Nation looks forward to working alongside all of those involved and to make a memorable Family Day weekend in 2023.”
The BCHL held the inaugural Road Show in February of 2020 in Kitimat and for those who do not know the name of the arena is the Tamitak Arena, which is Kitimat spelled in reverse.
In sticking with a format that works this event will feature more than just on-ice action that will see BCHL players and staff take part in community events and initiatives, such as school visits, hockey camps and much more.
Sportswave wishes the BCHL much success with this event and remember ‘BE NICE TO THE OFFICIALS”