OneHockey holiday weekend tournament generating $3 million for Blaine economy
BLAINE, MN – Not often can a weekend youth hockey tournament boast it’s capable of a $3 million infusion in the local economy. But then again, a OneHockey event is anything but your everyday youth hockey tournament organization.
The industry’s undisputed leader in tournament organizing returns to the Schwan Super Rink, the world’s largest ice hockey facility, and Fogerty Arena this weekend to host its 4th Minnesota Gone Wild Tournament, OneHockey’s largest event yet in the State of Hockey.
The 228-game, four-day tournament will feature more than 2,100 players and coaches in addition to their families and friends visiting the area for the Martin Luther King holiday weekend, competing to raise the coveted OneHockey Cup in age divisions from the birth years 1997 to 2005.
“OneHockey is completely out of the ordinary,” says Sebastien Fortier, founder and chief executive officer of the Laguna Hills, CA, company. “Here’s the proof: Four years ago, we came to Minnesota and we initiated a tournament here that we’ve very proud of. We’re bringing 84 teams from outside the state to Blaine that will be staying in area hotels, that will eating in the local restaurants.
“We’re expecting this year’s tournament to have over a $3 million impact on the economy in the area. Minnesota Hockey is not even involved in our tournaments yet, but we’re hopeful they will be really soon. So we’ve built this incredible event without local support.”
Only five Minnesota teams will be participating in this year’s event, which will also feature more than 15 vendors in its hockey lobby expo, including first-time sponsors and hockey industry giants CCM and Bauer. Each team is scheduled for a minimum of four games. Furthermore, OneHockey is offering its unique money-back guarantee if any team is not satisfied that its holiday weekend experience in Blaine was not the most organized and entertaining youth hockey event its players, coaches and parents ever attended.
“When 99 percent of tournaments are full, it’s usually anywhere from 30 to 50 percent of local teams,” says Fortier, whose company organizes more than 25 events year round throughout North America. “Sometimes it’s all local teams. For us, that’s not the case. Look at this year: 84 out-of-town teams and only five local teams. I dare anybody show me another youth hockey tournament that can generate that type of out-of-town support. We’re very proud of this and work very hard at this.”
From its festive music and cavorting mascot throughout each venue to its red carpet “Selfie Station” social media interviews in the lobby and, of course, its trademark title celebrations – complete with a OneHockey Cup raising and non-alcoholic champagne celebrations – the OneHockey Experience cannot be equaled.