MONTREAL – As part of the celebrations surrounding the 375th anniversary of the City of Montreal, the Montreal Canadiens Children's Foundation is pleased to announce the selection of the borough of Ahuntsic-Cartierville as the recipient of a new BLEU BLANC BOUGE community rink in Montreal. Construction is set to get underway in May 2017 at Parc de Mésy with the opening scheduled for winter 2018.
“This ninth BLEU BLANC BOUGE rink will be very significant for the Foundation and the Montreal Canadiens family. It is important for us to make a significant contribution for the well-being of the Montreal community and to do so with a unique and permanent legacy during the 375th anniversary of the home of our Canadiens. In line with the Foundation mandate, this rink will provide the borough of Ahuntsic-Cartierville with an additional playground for kids, and give them a new state-of-the-art infrastructure that will help them discover the pleasures and benefits of living a healthy and active lifestyle," says president and CEO Geoff Molson.
“This new outdoor rink courtesy of the Montreal Canadiens Children’s Foundation for the 375th anniversary of the City of Montreal fits perfectly with our Montreal Physically Active Action Plan to provide sports facilities that will encourage our citizens to include physical activity in their daily routine. It is also in line with our Child Policy aimed at providing greater access to youth sports. We are pleased to have a major partner like the Montreal Canadiens Children’s Foundation as part of the celebrations. The entire neighborhood will benefit from this legacy enticing everyone to become physically active and adopt healthy lifestyles,” says Denis Coderre, Mayor of Montreal.
Parc de Mésy in Ahuntsic-Cartierville is a family and youth oriented location, attended by the local community. The Table de concertation Jeunesse Bordeaux-Cartierville and its healthy lifestyle committee observed a lack of sports facilities in the area. The partnership model of action for sport and leisure activities in this area will foster ownership of this infrastructure by schools and community organizations, allowing the Foundation to pursue its objective of helping disadvantaged youth to be more active.
“The rink will be located in the heart of an integrated urban revitalization area (IUR). It will bring together the different cultural communities around sport and physical activity. We recently acquired a building and lot that will allow us to build a new library and community center. All of these elements combined will improve the quality of life of this sector for the coming decades. We are grateful to the Montreal Canadiens Children’s Foundation for this amazing gift,” indicated Pierre Gagnier, mayor of the Ahuntsic-Cartierville borough.
The BLEU BLANC BOUGE program, presented by the Canadian Tire Jumpstart Foundation, consists of building high quality outdoor multipurpose and refrigerated community rinks to provide kids from underprivileged areas with infrastructures aiming at giving them a reason to discover the benefits of healthy habits and a physically active lifestyle. To ensure the success of this program, the Foundation formed a dynamic partnership with Québec en Forme, sharing the ultimate goal of improving the health of children living in underprivileged areas. As an organization promoting the well-being of children, Québec en Forme works closely with the Foundation in selecting community partners and districts to implement the program, developing efficient programming and assessing the impact of this initiative.
In 2017, the Foundation will simultaneously carry on with the deployment of its flagship program outside the greater Montreal area with its 10th BLEU BLANC BOUGE rink. The Foundation will proceed to select the recipient of this infrastructure over the coming months. The construction work for this rink will begin in August 2017 for an opening in the winter of 2018.
About the BLEU BLANC BOUGE program
The BLEU BLANC BOUGE rinks are built in accordance with NHL standards and dimensions (200 feet by 85 feet) and feature ice quality that meets the highest professional rinks standards, while offering the versatility to enjoy other sports over the course of the year. The skating season takes place from the end of November until mid-March, while various types of ball games like basketball, soccer, in-line hockey and other sporting activities are being played in the spring, summer and fall months. Since 2009, seven community outdoor rinks have been built on the Island of Montreal, in the boroughs of Villeray-St-Michel-Parc-Extension, Montreal North, Verdun, Lasalle and Côte-des-Neiges-Notre-Dame-de-Grâce as well as in Longueuil and Laval. As announced in December, the eighth BLEU BLANC BOUGE rink will be built in Parc Alfred-Élie-Dufresne in Sherbrooke in the fall of 2016 for an opening in the winter of 2017.
About the Montreal Canadiens Children’s Foundation
The Montreal Canadiens Children's Foundation provides help and support to children in need. Since its inception in August 2000, the Foundation has donated upwards of $20 million to close to 700 charitable endeavours from across the province of Quebec who work for the well-being of underprivileged children. The Foundation fulfills its mandate in two ways: first, through a unique flagship project – the BLEU BLANC BOUGE program - which consists of building community refrigerated and multisport rinks, secondly by providing financial support to organizations whose projects and programs allow children to adopt healthy lifestyles by being more active.