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World class rink in the works for Windsor


WINDSOR – The Birthplace of Hockey is one step closer to constructing a state-of-the-art arena – one that will draw visitors from around the world.

Premier Stephen McNeil announced funding to the tune of $3 million on Jan. 30 during the official opening ceremonies of the Long Pond Hockey Heritage Classic.

“I am pleased on behalf of all of you as citizens of our province, and citizens across our region, to commit on your behalf, and on behalf of the people of Nova Scotia, an additional $3 million... to work with your partners to not only build that shrine to hockey but to build a destination for hockey fans globally to come to Windsor, Nova Scotia,” said McNeil, adding that fans would get the chance to step on this ice and understand what it's like to be where hockey began.

The Town of Windsor and the Municipality of West Hants, plus King's-Edgehill School, each pledged $1 million for the new arena.

Greg Kelley, the chair of the Long Pond Hockey Arena Society, could hardly contain his excitement when telling the community about the project.

“We knew we had something special, something unique and we had something that we needed to share with the world to be celebrated both near and far,” said Kelley.

“We recognized that this was our now or never moment to capture all the passion that the game of hockey that started right here on Long Pond 200 years ago brings to our community and to our nation.”

They're proposing an arena complex that will become a destination for more than just hockey enthusiasts.

“This is more than just a building. This is a project that is a catalyst for economic growth and regional pride for our province,” said Kelley.

“Just as Cooperstown has capitalized on its reputation of the birthplace of baseball, we think that we can have a similar impact here in Windsor, West Hants, Nova Scotia to bring people here to celebrate the game.”

The proposed Hockey Heritage Centre will feature a 2,800 square foot hockey heritage museum, two NHL-sized rinks, two indoor practice soccer pitches, a high performance training centre and a 300-metre walking track that would provide views of Long Pond, Martock and the surrounding countryside.

McNeil said the province's commitment is just one stepping stone on the community's journey to having a world class facility. He said they need the community to buy into the vision and help the committee earn an additional $6 million.

Hants West MLA Chuck Porter, who sits on the arena committee, said he was excited that the project is moving forward.

“It's been a long time coming. We've been working at this for quite a while, (with) this particular project since November 2013.”

Unlike committees that were formed in the past to try to create a new arena, this project now has half of its funding in place.

They will be seeking federal funds as well, Porter said, as well as looking for the community to support their fundraising endeavours.

“This is not just an arena; this is a lot more. This has the potential to create such economic spinoffs in Windsor, West Hants and Nova Scotia that it could be phenomenal,” said Porter. “Remember, this is Cooperstown North and it is that for a reason. This is a big event. This is our game. This is where it began. We've got a lot to promote and we want to see people come from all over the world.”

 

To view a video of the announcement, visit: http://video.hantsjournal.ca/4729971891001/Hockey-Heritage-Centre-funding-announced.

Premier Stephen McNeil announced funding to the tune of $3 million on Jan. 30 during the official opening ceremonies of the Long Pond Hockey Heritage Classic.

“I am pleased on behalf of all of you as citizens of our province, and citizens across our region, to commit on your behalf, and on behalf of the people of Nova Scotia, an additional $3 million... to work with your partners to not only build that shrine to hockey but to build a destination for hockey fans globally to come to Windsor, Nova Scotia,” said McNeil, adding that fans would get the chance to step on this ice and understand what it's like to be where hockey began.

The Town of Windsor and the Municipality of West Hants, plus King's-Edgehill School, each pledged $1 million for the new arena.

Greg Kelley, the chair of the Long Pond Hockey Arena Society, could hardly contain his excitement when telling the community about the project.

“We knew we had something special, something unique and we had something that we needed to share with the world to be celebrated both near and far,” said Kelley.

“We recognized that this was our now or never moment to capture all the passion that the game of hockey that started right here on Long Pond 200 years ago brings to our community and to our nation.”

They're proposing an arena complex that will become a destination for more than just hockey enthusiasts.

“This is more than just a building. This is a project that is a catalyst for economic growth and regional pride for our province,” said Kelley.

“Just as Cooperstown has capitalized on its reputation of the birthplace of baseball, we think that we can have a similar impact here in Windsor, West Hants, Nova Scotia to bring people here to celebrate the game.”

The proposed Hockey Heritage Centre will feature a 2,800 square foot hockey heritage museum, two NHL-sized rinks, two indoor practice soccer pitches, a high performance training centre and a 300-metre walking track that would provide views of Long Pond, Martock and the surrounding countryside.

McNeil said the province's commitment is just one stepping stone on the community's journey to having a world class facility. He said they need the community to buy into the vision and help the committee earn an additional $6 million.

Hants West MLA Chuck Porter, who sits on the arena committee, said he was excited that the project is moving forward.

“It's been a long time coming. We've been working at this for quite a while, (with) this particular project since November 2013.”

Unlike committees that were formed in the past to try to create a new arena, this project now has half of its funding in place.

They will be seeking federal funds as well, Porter said, as well as looking for the community to support their fundraising endeavours.

“This is not just an arena; this is a lot more. This has the potential to create such economic spinoffs in Windsor, West Hants and Nova Scotia that it could be phenomenal,” said Porter. “Remember, this is Cooperstown North and it is that for a reason. This is a big event. This is our game. This is where it began. We've got a lot to promote and we want to see people come from all over the world.”

 

To view a video of the announcement, visit: http://video.hantsjournal.ca/4729971891001/Hockey-Heritage-Centre-funding-announced.

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