(November 19, 2003) -- The Toronto Maple Leafs launched their first official fan club Wednesday. With a strong following from St. John's to Victoria and around the world, there are hundreds of unofficial Leafs fan clubs. Until now, the Leafs have never established an official club.
"Leafs fans have been telling us they've wanted an official fan club for several years now," said Tom Anselmi, senior vice-president, business and chief marketing officer, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment Ltd. "A fan club is the perfect way to connect with our dedicated fans, while providing them a forum that will satisfy their insatiable thirst for information about their favourite team."
The 77-year old hockey team already runs Buds Club, a successful fan club for young Leafs fans under 12 years of age, the largest children's fan club in the National Hockey League.
"The idea was to establish a club that would complement Buds Club, but would be geared towards teens and adults who have outgrown the Buds Club," Anselmi added.
For the cost of $25 plus shipping and handling, fans will receive a new Leafs Club magazine, a media guide, an exclusive Leafs Fan Club T-shirt, a membership card, a 15 per cent discount on Leafs merchandise at CentreSports, advance notice on special events and a host of other valuable benefits.
St. Joseph Media Inc., publisher of Toronto Life and Saturday Night magazines, has joined up with the Leafs to manage the club administration and to publish the new Leafs Club magazine.
Leafs fans will also have an opportunity to vote for an official club name on www.mapleleafs.com/fanclub. Results will be announced in early 2004.