Calgary, AB – The Calgary Flames and Flames Foundation for Life were joined by the South
|Trails West Bantam winger Nolan Gardiner scored the first goal at the new rink at the Flames Community Arena.
West Arena Society, Mayor Naheed Nenshi, Calgary Bow MLA Alana Delong and MP Lee Richardson today to officially open the new rink at the Flames Community Arenas.
The day began with a Ceremonial Puck drop followed by an exhibition match between the Trails West Hockey Association and Glenlake Hockey Association. Visitors were also treated to a family BBQ and visit by fan favorite Harvey the Hound.
Right winger Nolan Gardiner, on Trails West scored the first goal ever on this ice! He's 13 and an honours student at Bishop Pinkham. His team is called the Trails West Dawgs, Bantam 1. Nolan's father, Stephen Gardiner was thrilled.
"Nolan will forever be the first person to ever score in this beautiful facility," said Gardiner. "That the Flames have played such a huge part in the building of this rink makes it all that more special for him."
“For close to a decade, a dedicated team of volunteers and professionals has been dreaming, planning, designing and lobbying to make this first class facility even better.” says Brian Fleming, Chair of the South West Arena Society Expansion Steering Committee. “And now, thanks to the foresight and generosity of our partners; the Civic, Provincial and Federal Governments, along with the Calgary Flames and our private donors and sponsors we have succeeded. Ice sports are knit very tightly into the Canadian fabric and we have improved the quality of our community with this expansion.”
“A great deal of volunteer time and energy went into this great project. The Calgary Flames and our Foundation are honoured to have played our part in a beautiful facility designed to enhance the need of the hockey community,” said Calgary Flames President and CEO Ken King.
“I am proud to be part of this important rink opening today,” said Mayor Naheed Nenshi. ”Hockey is a key part of our culture in Calgary. With the need for ice time being so high, my council colleagues and I are thrilled the City of Calgary played a role in making this new community area a reality.”
“The Government of Alberta was pleased to support the upgrading and expansion of this facility to meet our city’s growing hockey, ringette, figure skating, lacrosse and recreational needs with a $5 million grant from the Major Community Facilities Program,” said Lindsay Blackett, Minister of Culture and Community Spirit and MLA for Calgary-North West. Projects like this bring people together and help build strong communities.”
“Your Federal Government is proud to have supported this initiative with an investment of $1 million through the Recreational Infrastructure Canada program. The success of our Economic Action Plan is a tribute to the partnerships between city, provincial and federal governments and the community” said Calgary-Centre MP Lee Richardson
The Flames Community Arenas (formerly Calgary Centennial Arenas) opened in November 1986 after a group of dedicated residents saw the advantages that a twin arena complex would provide to the community. With this recent expansion, the Flames Community Arenas will accommodate over 750 000 visitors annually.