TORONTO – The Vancouver Canucks will take on the New York Islanders in Terrace, BC (view on map) as part of the 2009/10 NHL® pre-season this September. After a record number of votes, Canadians selected Terrace today as the most passionate hockey community in Canada and the winner of Kraft Hockeyville 2009. Terrace edged out more than 7,100 entries and joins previous Kraft Hockeyville winners Roberval, QC (2008); North Bay, ON (2007); and Salmon River, NS (2006).
Terrace will play host to the Vancouver Canucks and the New York Islanders on Monday, September 14. The game highlights will be televised during a one-hour Kraft Hockeyville broadcast showcasing their community on CBC Television. Terrace also receives $100,000 towards arena upgrades from Kraft Canada as part of the Grand Prize. Four runner-up communities; Humboldt, SK; Woolwich, ON; Thetford Mines, QC; and Harbour Grace, NL will receive $25,000 towards arena upgrades from Kraft Canada.
"Kraft Hockeyville 2009 was a huge success receiving a record number of community entries," said Dino Bianco, President, Kraft Canada. "Congratulations to Terrace for their tremendous win and their successful campaign in this year’s competition. We are very excited to visit your community in September."
"Kraft Hockeyville is a truly unique event. It celebrates the type of passion that can unite an entire community to reach a common goal. It embraces our fans’ love of the game with the ultimate prize – a NHL game played in their town and better accommodations for future hockey games," said NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman. "We’re especially proud that Kraft Hockeyville - now in its fourth year - has become an important event in the NHL calendar and I offer my congratulations to all who participated."
"We congratulate Terrace, BC on being named Kraft Hockeyville 2009," said Paul Kelly, NHLPA Executive Director. "Many of our NHLPA members hail from communities just like Terrace and look forward to playing in front of the passionate hockey fans in a small intimate arena."
"The Vancouver Canucks are proud to host the New York Islanders in one of the most passionate hockey communities in our province, Terrace, British Columbia," said President and CEO of Canucks Sports & Entertainment, Chris Zimmerman. "This is a well-deserved award; the people of Terrace are enthusiastic supporters of the Vancouver Canucks and NHL hockey and reflect the incredible fans we have here in B.C."
"It is an honour to be selected to play in Terrace, the winner of Kraft Hockeyville 2009," said Garth Snow, New York Islanders General Manager. "The Terrace community embodies the passion that all hockey fans feel about NHL hockey."
The final round voting results from Kraft Hockeyville 2009 exceeded all previous records totalling 6,390,999 votes. The final round voting results follow (telephone, online and texting):
• Terrace, BC - 1,923,456
• Humboldt, Saskatchewan - 1,810,100
• Woolwich Township, Ontario - 1,163,142
• Harbour Grace, Newfoundland - 754,936
• Thetford Mines, Quebec - 739,365
This year's total program votes from round one and two was 9,054,718, a 19 percent increase over last year’s 7,312,074 program votes total.
Kraft Hockeyville 2009 started out as a national search for Canada’s most spirited hockey town. Communities across Canada were invited to submit a short essay with supporting photos that depicted their hometown pride and passion for hockey.
Kraft Hockeyville 2009 partners include Kraft Canada, CBC, the National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) and the National Hockey League (NHL).