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Red Deer To Host 2015 Esso Cup

Hockey Canada, in partnership with Hockey Alberta, the Red Deer Minor Hockey Commission and the Alberta Major Midget Female Hockey League (AMMFHL), announced Tuesday that Red Deer, Alta., will host the 2015 Esso Cup, Canada’s National Female Midget Championship, from April 19-26, 2015.

The host Red Deer Chiefs of the AMMFHL will be joined by five regional champions (Atlantic, Ontario, Pacific, Quebec and West) to compete for the national championship at the 1,400-seat Red Deer Arena.

Red Deer will be the third Alberta city to host the Esso Cup in its seven-year history, joining Calgary (2009) and St. Albert (2011). Alberta teams have won a medal at every Esso Cup since the tournament debuted in 2009, including two silver and four bronze.

“Red Deer has a strong reputation of hosting national championships and we can’t wait to work with the host committee and Hockey Canada to put on a memorable event,” said Terry Engen, chair of Hockey Alberta. “The 2015 Esso Cup will bring some of the best young female hockey players to Alberta to compete to be called the best and we can’t wait to be a part of it.”

“I would like to thank Hockey Canada and Hockey Alberta for their support of our bid for the 2015 Esso Cup. Countless hours have gone into reaching our goal of hosting Canada’s National Female Midget Championship in 2015, and we can’t wait for the puck to drop,” said Todd Thiessen, chair of the host organizing committee and president of the Red Deer Minor Hockey Commission. “We couldn’t be more excited, and are so proud of the female hockey players from Central Alberta, particularly our host Red Deer Chiefs. This will go a long way to growing female hockey in the province of Alberta.”

“The Esso Cup has become one of the highlights of the women’s hockey calendar in Canada, and we could not be more excited to take the event to Red Deer next spring,” said Dean McIntosh, director of events and properties for Hockey Canada. “Red Deer has such a rich Midget hockey tradition, and hosting the 2015 Esso Cup will only add to that.”


Hockey Alberta Partners With

Coaches and youth hockey players in Alberta will be the beneficiaries of an exciting new product made available as the result of a partnership between Hockey Alberta and is a free coaching and player development platform that delivers cutting edge on-ice programming, coaching assistance, and practice planning tools. Coaches registered with Hockey Alberta will have the opportunity to utilize the resources available through during the 2014-15 season.

"This partnership is a great opportunity for our volunteer coaches across Alberta. We want to provide our coaches high quality resources and information to assist them in the growth and development of our great game,” said Drew Dixon, Manager of Coach Development for Hockey Alberta.

The platform will custom load information, practice plans and videos based on the age level of team/players. The software is state of the art technology and the delivery system allows coaches to access a wealth of information and knowledge and share this information with their players and parents quickly and easily. Coaches also can build practices in video, and manage all aspects of their team activities.

"Hockey Alberta is an outstanding and forward thinking organization, and the organization and its volunteers impact so many young boys and girls in a positive way. There are many success stories as a result of their hard work and commitment and we are very excited to be a part of it," said Mark Maloney, Chief Executive Officer of

To access the free resources, coaches can go to, or click on the link on the Coaches tab of the Hockey Alberta website.


Comrie’s Sports Equipment Bank Launches In Calgary

The program has been a hit in Edmonton and, starting today, Calgary will be home to a sports equipment bank that will help thousands of youngsters play hockey in southern Alberta.

Comrie’s Sports Equipment Bank will help address a major hurdle that keeps many kids out of sports and that is the cost of equipment. The program, which has been months in the making and has involved a number of stakeholders, will provide head-to-toe hockey equipment for youth who qualify.

The model is based on a successful program in Edmonton called Sport Central, which has been operating for more than 20 years and assisted more than 8,600 children in 2013, with 60 per cent of those being hockey players.

“No kid should be denied the right to play due to financial limitations,” says Al Coates, who is chair of the Southern Alberta Sports Equipment Bank Society. “As partners, we’re excited that we can play a role in diminishing the financial impact through our program.”

Comrie’s Sports Equipment Bank is the result of the support of Bill Comrie and his family, along with the work of partners KidSport Calgary, Hockey Calgary, Hockey Canada Foundation, Sport Calgary, the Western Hockey League, Calgary Flames Foundation and Hockey Alberta.

KidSport Calgary will work with a number of charitable agencies to determine who qualifies for the program. Once their child or children qualify, parents will need to make an appointment with the equipment bank to size and outfit the young athletes.

Kevin Webster, executive director of KidSport Calgary, says the program’s success will also rely on many volunteers. If you’re looking to help more kids play hockey, now is your chance.

 “We are currently looking for volunteers to help in the shop in servicing youth and their families as they come in for appointments,” says Webster. “We also need help getting donated equipment ready for distribution. Volunteers will be a big key to our success as we look to ramp up our operations leading into hockey season.”

 If you’re interested in volunteering or donating new or gently-used equipment, please contact Russell Gillespie, general manager of the Southern Alberta Sports Equipment Bank Society. Gillespie can be reached at (403) 861-1473.

 One of the goals with Comrie’s Sports Equipment Bank will be to outfit kids for all types of sports. Right now, the focus will be on hockey but the program will move into other sports in the near future.


 The Southern Alberta Sports Equipment Bank Society is a not-for-profit organization that oversees Comrie’s Sports Equipment Bank. The SASEBS is made up of one staff person and a volunteer board of directors. For more information on the society, contact Russell Gillespie at (403) 861-1473. 

KidSportTM Society of Calgary has been providing assistance to children in need for the past 18 years. We work closely with families and local sport clubs to help pay registration fees and distribute the necessary equipment that allows low-income kids to get active and engaged in sports. Since 1995, KidSport Calgary has distributed  more than $5 million in support of almost 22,000 kids in Calgary and the surrounding communities. Help KidSport Calgary continue to motivate kids to play, because healthy kids make healthy adults.