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HomeNewsGrande Prairie Storm prepare for start of exhibition season

Grande Prairie Storm prepare for start of exhibition season

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The Grande Prairie Storm will be back on the ice in 2020, as the team has been given the green light to play exhibition games against the Whitecourt Wolverines starting October 9th. One of seven cohorts approved league-wide, the Storm will only be playing against Whitecourt, both home and away.

Storm Vice-President Chris Millsap says the announcement by the league is one that players and coaching staff have been waiting a long time to hear, and he is pleased to see forward momentum.

“It’s been a long road for our players, really since hockey ended last year. With the uncertainty as to when they’re going to play again, and then starting up this year late with even more uncertainty when practices were going to turn into games,” he says. “I can’t imagine how players in this league and leagues across Canada are just chomping at the bit to get going.”

However, Millsap adds that the announcement is a bit of a double-edged sword. He says it is a step in the right direction when it comes to getting the league back on its feet, but the cost of travel will become a major issue if fans are not allowed in arenas for the foreseeable future.

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“As things open up [with] overnight trips and longer road trips, the costs remain the same yet our ability to fund the team through ticket sales has been pretty much gutted with only 100 people allowed in the arena right now. It’s good to have some idea from a business perspective that we are going to be moving forward, but if we are continuing to be unable to sell tickets into the arena it’s going to create even further strain, unfortunately, on us.”

As part of Alberta Health Services’ health and safety protocols surrounding COVID-19, a maximum of 100 fans will be allowed to attend any indoor setting, which includes Grande Prairie Storm games. However, as of October 5th, the team has not yet released pricing or availability of tickets for the home games scheduled.

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