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Kings boost connections with minor hockey teams

The Elmira Sugar Kings are aiming to strengthen their connection with the local minor hockey associations through a new fundraiser.

The team is hosting an “elimination night” on Oct. 1 at the Elmira Lions Hall and there are limited tickets left. It’s a chance for hockey parents and fans to get together for a night of music, food, and a chance to win everything from free minor hockey registration to $3,000.

Sugar Kings executive member Scott Basler says they were brainstorming a fundraiser they could do with all three organizations together and he recalled attending other successful elimination nights.

“There’s 150 tickets and they all get thrown into a draw. This is a draw where you don’t want your name to be called,” he explained.

One ticket is for two people, typically a couple, and the first person whose ticket is drawn from the drum will get their child’s minor hockey registration paid for the season by the Sugar Kings. After that every fifth ticket drawn will receive clothing from the Sugar Kings or one of the minor hockey associations. Every tenth ticket drawn will win $100.

“Once we get to the top 10, obviously the tenth ticket would be $100 and then down to the fifth ticket would also be $100. We’ve got five tickets left in the drum, so the fifth last would get $100, fourth would get $300, third would get $700, the second last ticket in there would get $1000 and the very last ticket in the drum would get $3,000,” he said.

They’ll slowly start to draw the tickets throughout the night to drum up the suspense and make it a big event for the last 10 tickets drawn.

While it’s a chance to raise money for all three groups it’s also about aligning the Junior B team more with the minor hockey teams, to get both male and female minor hockey players out to watch the Sugar Kings play at home. The Kings increased their presence within minor hockey last season by partnering with the local major midget team, the Junior Sugar Kings.

“Since I’ve been a part of the Sugar Kings and I have young kids I just noticed there was a gap between the Sugar Kings hockey and minor hockey. We’re trying to make it a better partnership,” he said.

They haven’t picked anything specific they’ll use any profits from the night for. Whatever they give to the Woolwich Wildcats and the Woolwich Wild will be theirs to use as they wish.

Tickets have been snatched up quickly since they announced the elimination night. Local returning Sugar Kings players will be there, along with new and former Sugar Kings parents and lots of minor hockey parents. The evening is for those 19 and older since alcohol will be served.

“Being a hockey parent I know how crazy the season is and this is Oct. 1, it’s  the start of the hockey season. We wanted to get involved with minor hockey and say the craziness of hockey is starting, here’s one night for parents to come out and get away from the kids, go mingle with hockey parents…just something  different out of the rink that the parents can enjoy. That’s really what we pushed and it’s really taken off,” Basler said.

Fergus-based country band Moonshine will be performing at the fundraiser and the Elmira Golf Club’s restaurant, Grill on the Green is catering.

“We’re hoping with this year if we can make it work and it’s a success that we can continue on for a couple years to create that partnership and keep it strong,” Basler said.

Tickets are $100 for two people and includes admission, food and a pair of Sugar Kings game tickets. If interested you can purchase tickets from Scott Basler at scott-sugarkings@outlook.com or Rob Hall at rhall1970@hotmail.com.

The Sugar Kings’ pres-season starts Aug. 21 with a 2:30 p.m. game in Waterloo. They return home on Aug. 23 versus Waterloo at 7:30 p.m., Aug. 28 versus Guelph at 7 p.m. and Aug. 31 versus Cambridge at 7:30 p.m. Their final pre-season game is in Cambridge at 7 p.m. on Sept. 3.


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