The Ste. Anne Arena has been nominated for Kraft Hockeyville.
Nominations are being accepted from across the country with the winning community being announced on April 1st. The grand prize is the opportunity to host an NHL pre-season game, plus a quarter million dollars in arena upgrades.
Sarah Normandeau is Recreational Services Manager for Ste. Anne. She says their arena is more than 50 years old and is rich in history. However, Normandeau notes their ice plant badly needs an upgrade.
"It's definitely gotten to the point where we're Band-Aiding our way through and every season it's flip the switch and say a prayer and hope it all goes well," she explains. "It's definitely time to try to get some funding because we're finding ourselves very stretched with that system."
Not only is the hockey rink stretched, but so too is the curling rink. Normandeau explains they have a very unique setup in Ste. Anne, where the hockey and skating rinks run off of the same system. And, she says curling is thriving in Ste. Anne.
"They are busy every single night, they have teams, they have mixed and men's and they have tonnes of bonspiels and the schools are involved," she explains. "Our curling program, it's super, super healthy."
She adds their curling community is also really wanting this upgrade.
Nominations for Kraft Hockeyville close February 19th and immediately following that is the judging period which runs until March 11th. Then, the top four communities are announced with voting open from March 31st at 8 am (CST) to April 1st at 4 pm (CST). The winner is then announced on April 1st.
As mentioned, the winning community has the opportunity to host an NHL pre-season game, plus a quarter million dollars in arena upgrades. All three runner-ups will receive $25,000 for arena upgrades.
Normandeau says right now they need people from the southeast to share stories, photos and videos of the arena to the Kraft Hockeyville site in order to boost their chances of winning.