PENTICTON, British Columbia -- Year two of the Young Stars tournament in Penticton has been drawing positive reviews from the city’s organizing committee, fans, media members, and the five NHL clubs in attendance.
The five-day event in the Okanagan has gone off without a hitch, and while attendance has dropped from last year’s inaugural edition, numbers aren’t at a level that will scare off the member parties from working toward a third annual event at the state of the art South Okanagan Events Centre in Penticton.
The popular vacation destination located between Okanagan and Skaha Lake seem to be the perfect fit for the event. Penticton’s September weather, the accessibility and functionality of the venue, and relative proximity to the four Western Canadian entrants have made the event and the city a great fit.
City Councillor Andrew Jakubeit spoke to the revenue the event brings to the local economy, and the notoriety the city receives as positive of the event. Jakubeit was quick to point out the large swarms of fans from Edmonton and Vancouver (among the smaller herds Jets and Flames faithful) that have traveled to the city to take in the hockey and the regional tourist attractions.
Jakubeit is hopeful the host Canucks and the city can have a framework for a potential 2012 event in place prior to the chaos of the NHL home-stretch and postseason, to allow for a head start on marketing and ticket sales.
I have been blessed to play for 16 years in the NHL; it has been an amazing ride. I would like to thank the Tampa Bay Lightning and New York Rangers organizations and owners for providing me the opportunity to play the sport I love for so many years. I could have never played for so long or accomplished all that I have without the unwavering love and support from my wife, Heather, our three sons, Ryan, Lucas, and Mason, and my parents.
— Martin St. Louis after announcing his retirement from the NHL on Thursday