As Prince Albert Raiders business manager Michael Scissons put it on Tuesday afternoon, “You only have one crack at celebrating a 50th season of hockey.”
The Raiders will be starting their half-century celebration on Wednesday, Aug. 12 and Thursday, Aug. 13 at the Cooke Municipal Golf Course, as they’ll be hosting their 22nd annual golf classic and welcoming back a host of Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League and Western Hockey League alumni for the two-day event.
“The whole idea to have a major golf tournament like this has been in the back of the organization’s mind for a few years now,” Scissons said. “With the 50th season of Raiders hockey coming up, it represented the perfect opportunity to do that.
“We started working on what the event would look like a couple of months ago and how we can punctuate it by bringing the alumni back.”
The first four alumni were announced on Tuesday morning as Chicago Blackhawks head coach Jeremy Colliton, Edmonton Oilers bench boss Dave Tippett, former NHL player Scott Hartnell and long-time Raiders general manager and head coach Terry Simpson will all be taking part in the event.
“Those four guys are ones that we targeted right from the get-go,” Scissons said. “Starting today, we reached out to our larger alumni pool and we’re hoping to get back as many as we can for the two-day event.
“Ideally, we would have two different tee-off times with 72 teams and 72 alumni, in addition to possibly having even more people involved the night before.”
In addition to the tournament on Aug. 13, an alumni banquet will be held on Aug. 12, which will be hosted by former Raiders announcer and current Winnipeg Jets radio broadcaster Brian Munz.
The Raiders’ golf classic has previously been held prior to the start of the regular season and the start of training camp, but will move up a couple of weeks this year.
“The reason for that is to attract some of the alumni back that are still playing, as they need to get ready for their training camps around the dates that we have usually had it,” Scissons said.
The Raiders are also working on having other events to celebrate the club’s 50th season.
“Obviously the golf tournament is the kickoff to the whole year, but we’re planning a lot of things for the fans and the players to take part in,” Scissons said.
“We think it’s going to be a memorable year for every Raiders fan.”
The entry fee for the golf tournament is $1,200 per foursome, which includes a Raiders alumni as the fifth player.
For more information, contact Scissons via email at email@example.com