The Peace River Navigators are excited to be hosting this year’s Alberta Junior B Provincial Championships from April 3-7.

“The opportunity to host the provincials is rotated amongst the five Alberta Junior B leagues so the NWJHL has the opportunity to host every fifth year,” says Peace River Navigators’ committee chair Joseph Fawcett.

“Typically, the hope is that it moves to different communities within the league,” he adds. “The last time the league hosted was Fort St. John Huskies in 2018 (which is outside Alberta, but they are in an Alberta league), and the last time the Navs hosted it, was 2010.”

Fawcett says the excitement to host the games is growing with every passing moment, and he’s hoping that the community will rally together to help support the games.

He adds there will be a total of six teams participating in the tournament including four from outside the region and the Navigators. Each league will be represented by their respective champion, plus the host Navigators.

“All games will be played at Baytex Energy Centre,” says Fawcett. “There will be three games each day from Wednesday to Saturday and then a bronze medal game and gold medal game on the Sunday.”

Fawcett says this is a great opportunity to cheer on the home team and to see some really great hockey played.

“I feel it’s important for the community to showcase the town and area to participants and fans from the southern parts of Alberta,” he says.

“I don’t imagine a lot of people come up here from around the cities and outlying areas, so this is an opportunity for the community to put their best foot forward and really showcase, not only Peace River, but the Peace Country. When these events run well it can bode well for future applications,” he adds.

Fawcett says they are looking for some community members to help support the affectionately dubbed ‘Navs’ to make their hosting efforts a success.

“First off, obviously, we would love to see huge fan support, not just for the Navs but for all the games,” says Fawcett. “The level of hockey is outstanding and well worth coming to see.

“Hopefully, the Navs’ games will be in front of full crowds as well.

“Secondly, we do need some volunteer support for various duties throughout the tournament.”

Fawcett says they are looking for approximately 16 volunteers per game to do things like run the score clock, penalty box, be security, sell 50/50s, sell entry tickets, assist with hospitality rooms, and so much more. He says there are a number of roles they are asking for help with, and any help would be greatly appreciated.

The age of hockey players ranges from 16 to 21, and this is a great chance for kids to master their hockey skills.

“I think it’s important that youth and young teens can have a goal if they want to continue playing hockey for one,” he says.

“Seeing the team have success and be able to watch that and want to be part of that is important. The teams and league are very structured, and I think that serves youth well to understand the commitment of being a part of something like that as they move forward in their lives.”

Fawcett says playing within a system and working well with teammates are a few things learned playing at this level.

“The community supports the Navs through being fans as well as sponsorship and it’s important to the organization and the players to be able to give back in a small way to show their appreciation by being out in the community,” says Fawcett.

“There are a number of events on the social media pages that show a lot of smiling faces, both from players and participants in all of these events. The Navs’ vision is to build men of character through the sport of hockey, community and faith.”

If you would like to volunteer to help during the playoffs or would like more information on the playoffs, please email northpeacenavigators@gmail.com or visit their website navshockey.com

Emily Plihal Local Journalism Initiative Reporter – South Peace News – southpeacenews.com

Original Published on Mar 06, 2024 at 12:30

This item reprinted with permission from   South Peace News   High Prairie, Alberta

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