The buzzer has sounded, the votes are in and the news is official – Stirling-Rawdon is Kraft Hockeyville 2012. After weeks of determined campaigning, culminating with a national vote to select the winner, Stirling-Rawdon has earned the title of Canada’s most passionate hockey community.
Stirling-Rawdon will host a 2012-2013 NHL® pre-season game between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Columbus Blue Jackets, receive $100,000 in arena upgrade money from Kraft Canada, and enjoy a visit from CBC’s Hockey Night In Canada. The Ontario town will also receive $10,000 in food bank donations from Kraft Canada.
The four runner-up communities, all of which displayed incredible solidarity and enthusiasm throughout the competition, will have their efforts rewarded with $25,000 each from Kraft Canada to go towards the social hubs they so passionately promoted – their local arena.
More than 11 million votes were registered for the Top 5 communities, between March 17 and March 20, 2012.
“Just like in hockey, this competition requires passion and teamwork to win” said Dino Bianco, President, Kraft Canada. “I’d like to congratulate the community of Stirling-Rawdon for their tireless effort, passion and creativity. We look forward to showcasing your winning spirit when we visit this fall.”
“CBC is delighted to continue to positively impact the lives of communities across Canada through Kraft Hockeyville 2012,” said Julie Bristow, Executive Director, Studio and Unscripted Programming, CBC. “Alongside the NHL, NHLPA and Kraft Canada, Kraft Hockeyville allows us to bring the great sport of hockey to communities such as Stirling-Rawdon, ON that have a passion and desire to increase exposure and participation in the sport.”
"Great things happen when a community focuses its passion on a cause as exciting as Kraft Hockeyville," said NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman. "The National Hockey League is extremely pleased to join Kraft in supporting this outstanding program, which ensures the longevity of a neighborhood rink and creates a legacy of hockey opportunities."
“Kraft Hockeyville 2012 is a great achievement for Stirling-Rawdon, and the NHLPA congratulates the local community for demonstrating their passion for hockey to the rest of Canada,” said Don Fehr, NHLPA Executive Director.
“Players enjoy being a part of Kraft Hockeyville, and the pre-season game in October will be another opportunity for the Players to connect with fans.”
“We are thrilled to be participating in Kraft Hockeyville 2012 and look forward to an exciting visit with the members of Leafs Nation in Stirling-Rawdon next season," said Toronto Maple Leafs President and General Manager Brian Burke.
“The Kraft Hockeyville program is a great celebration of the game of hockey and the Columbus Blue Jackets are proud to be taking part in this game,”
said club Executive Vice President and General Manager Scott Howson. “We look forward to visiting Stirling-Rawdon next October and playing the Toronto Maple Leafs.”
To view photos and videos, fans are encouraged to join the Kraft Hockeyville Facebook Fan page, check out coverage on NHL.com and follow @hockeyville on Twitter.
The Kraft Hockeyville partners would like to thank and congratulate all of the communities that participated in this year’s competition.
Kraft Hockeyville 2012 partners are Kraft Canada, CBC, The National Hockey League (NHL), and The National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA).
Kraft Canada has supported hockey for over 30 years through sponsorships and grassroots programs. Since its inception, the Kraft Hockeyville partners have provided over $1,000,000 in arena upgrade money, equipment, and local food bank donations.
Supporting brands for Kraft Hockeyville 2012 include Kraft Dinner, Cracker Barrel, Chips Ahoy, Tassimo, Oreo, and Maxwell House.