By Dave Leaderhouse
A couple of times each year it is time well spent looking into each of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League team websites to see what is happening behind the scenes with the 12 franchises.
All clubs are generally quite busy in their respective community and most, if not all, are having some sort of fundraiser to help raise funds to offset increasing costs associated with running a Junior “A” franchise.
Following is a quick look at what is happening away from the rink for each of the SJHL clubs.
Battlefords North Stars – head coach and general manager Nate Bedford along with his four captains recently went to Shellbrook to help promote the upcoming Hockey Day in Saskatchewan which will be held in that community in early January. The players were also busy assisting the Battlefords Boys and Girls clubs with equipment fitting sessions and they also attended a care centre to play games with the residents. North Battleford will also be the site of the Grand Slam of Curling Canadian Open in January so the city is abuzz with that event too.
Estevan Bruins – always busy in the community and with fundraisers, the biggest of which is the annual Sportsman Dinner. Plans have not been announced yet for this year’s event, but in the past the Estevan event has attracted a number of popular keynote speakers.
Flin Flon Bombers – just gave away a side-by-side ATV to conclude a successful raffle and in early December will have their annual Teddy Bear Toss to get stuffed toys for those in need.
Humboldt Broncos – spent some time playing floor hockey with the Special Olympics and are in the midst of a “Feed the Herd” campaign where farmers can donate grain to be sold as a fundraising effort.
Kindersley Klippers – are holding a 50 K 50/50 draw with just 2,000 tickets available. The price is $50 each and can be purchased at 306-460-6435. Draw date is December 17.
La Ronge Ice Wolves – will be holding its third annual parents weekend and Back the Pack Supper on Nov. 19. Former NHL player Brian Skrudland will be the guest speaker and a number of items will also be auctioned off. More information on this event is available by calling 306-425-7814.
Melfort Mustangs – always one of the busier teams the Mustangs will be hosting a parent/billet weekend on Dec. 2-3 and a Ladies Night on Jan 28.
Melville Millionaires – are in the midst of a Growing for Success campaign where they are also collecting grain donated by local area farmers. A number of the Millionaires’ players are also growing facial hair and raising funds for Movember and players recently visited local schools in an attempt to get to know the younger fans better.
Nipawin Hawks – from golf tournaments to fishing derbys the Hawks are always busy, but right now what they have on the go is a Cash Super Lotto with the early bird draw taking place on Nov. 25. The grand prize, which is $1000/week for a year will be given out on Dec. 17. Tickets, which are $25 each, can be obtained by calling 1-877-797-2673.
Notre Dame Hounds – they too are having a Cash Lottery with 250 tickets being sold. Cash prizes will be awarded on the first Wednesday of every month with prize value increasing as the season progresses. Tickets can be purchased by calling 306-732-1218.
Weyburn Red Wings – always busy in the community the Red Wings recently held a progressive 50/50 draw and they too stage a Sportsman’s Dinner each year. More details will be announced on the next event in the future.
Yorkton Terriers – former NHL goaltender Clint Malarchuk will be the guest speaker at the annual Sportsman Dinner scheduled for January 21. The Terriers usually hold a Home and Leisure Lotto as well, but details for this year are not readily available.
With Christmas quickly approaching every club will undoubtedly have extra events to share with their fans and one can’t forget the monthly SJHL education lottery where tickets on a 50/50 draw can be purchased by going to www.sjhl.ca/5050.