Over the weekend, Lumsden’s campaign to be named this year’s Kraft Hockeyville fell short.
Organizer Jamie Lees says while they’re disappointed with the result, they were just happy to be a part of it.
“Very proud to be in the running with three other big contenders,” said Lees. “A big congratulations going out to the winner as well, they clearly needed the money and that will go towards good use for them, but it’s disappointing for sure.”
Elsipotog First Nation in New Brunswick was named the winner, claiming the prize of $250,000 for arena upgrades and an opportunity to host an NHL preseason game.
The rest of the finalists were awarded $25,000 for arena upgrades, and $10,000 for new equipment. Lees says that money will be put to good use.
“It’s still huge for us, every little bit makes a difference,” said Lees. “We’re a small community, and our rink isn’t funded by tax dollars, it’s actually just by donations and fundraising and volunteerism, so that money is still going to be put to good use for sure.”
Despite the loss, Lees says the support from the province was overwhelming.
“I can’t even explain an experience like that,” said Lees. “To be able to, virtually, rally people together like that in a year of a pandemic when you can’t actually physically meet with anybody, but yet be able to rally a whole province behind you, was something I’ve never experienced before. Pretty proud of that.”
As for what’s next for the Lumsden Sports Centre, Lees says they’ll to find another to raise the money they need.