April 7, 2015
Thank you, thank you,thank you………… To all of you who put forth your time and efforts, voting and supporting Haliburton for the title of Hockeyville 2015. Your support is sincerely appreciated by all of us who were working on this. Although we didn’t make it into the finals, we have much to be proud of, getting as far as we did and at least earning $25,000 for our arena, which will allow the municipality to complete further important improvements to the arena’s efficiency. I rather suspected that Chatham Kent would be the entry to beat when the Top 10 were announced. Not only are they a much larger centre than ours, but their arena also hosts a junior B team, which would add greatly to their devoted fan base. Also, worth noting was that they were identified their town with their county, of Kent. If we had tried that, we would have to call ourselves “Haliburton Haliburton,” which would have been rather confusing. Having said that, I find myself coming back to the issue of fragmented support in our community for such efforts such as this, that Charlie Teljeur talked about recently in an editorial piece. This “fragmenting” of support was evident in this latest effort and I have no way of knowing if it would have made a difference, but I do know it was a factor. We can’t hope to get past the disadvantage of having such a small population base without all working together as a team! The Highland Storm Pee Wee Hockey Team just won an all Ontario OMHA championship on Saturday afternoon. Those 12-year-old athletes are from all around the county and they worked their magic together as a team to accomplish this distinction and I applaud them for it. All Ontario championships don’t come often and certainly don’t come without a great deal of teamwork all season long! We adults could take away a good lesson in teamwork from their success. Finally, I want to acknowledge Tamara Wilbee and her extended team for their exceptional effort in this exciting endeavour. I was very proud and pleased that the Hockeyville judges chose to put my name and words on their website as the nominator but the heavy lifting and the original nomination plus the major promotion was done out of Tamara’s office and we wouldn’t really have gotten off the ground without their involvement. Thanks again to all of you. It’s been quite a ride.