Kraft Hockeyville 2022 nominations open to help ignite passionate hockey communities across the country
Hockey-loving Canadian communities will rally together for the chance to host an NHL® preseason game and receive $250,000 in arena upgrades .
February 22, 2022 – Kraft Heinz Canada, in partnership with the National Hockey League (NHL®) and the National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA), have announced that nominations are open for Kraft Hockeyville 2022. Nominations will close April 3 at 11:59 p.m. EST.
Hockey is Canada’s game and its impact on our communities is unmatched. According to the Kraft Hockeyville Community Hockey Survey, 85 per cent of Canadians agree that hockey is a catalyst to bringing communities together, but nearly 50 per cent say the pandemic has negatively impacted the important community connection the game creates.
Canadians have struggled to stay on the ice as we work collectively to curb the spread of COVID-19. While the game of hockey might have looked different in our communities this season, Kraft Hockeyville remains determined to make sure our national sport continues to fuel that passion and pride in hockey communities from coast-to-coast. To bring the program to life this year they have partnered with three-time Olympic Gold Medalist Marie-Philip Poulin who knows very well the positive impact hockey can have on communities – particularly kids who grow up with the game.
“There’s no way around it, this year's Olympic experience was unique. But even though there weren’t many fans in the stands, our team was invigorated by our love for the game – a love that, for many of us, started as kids the moment we hit the ice at our community rink,” says Poulin. “Hockey in my community instilled a sense of belonging in me and allowed me to make lifelong connections. The benefits are endless, and that's why all Canadians should have access and opportunity to play. Nobody should be left out.”
Canadians agree that community hockey offers a range of benefits to participants. The survey also found that other than being a source of physical activity, Canadians see hockey as an important way for children to build social skills and teamwork (45 per cent) and improve their mental wellbeing (45 per cent). However, while these are important benefits, they are not currently accessible to all Canadians. In fact, almost three-quarters of Canadians (74 per cent) believe that hockey would improve if the sport were more inclusive of different genders, races, cultures, economic backgrounds and accessibility needs.
“Over the years, participating Kraft Hockeyville communities have shown us just how important breaking down barriers and encouraging access and participation in hockey is to the overall growth of the game,” says Matt Bruce, Senior Brand Manager, Kraft Heinz Canada. “The arena has, and always will be, the foundation of the game – and our goal is to help make that space inclusive and accessible for all members of the communities.”
Determined to invest in the future of hockey, Kraft Hockeyville has awarded $4.1 million to 89 communities to address the growing costs associated with aging sports and recreation infrastructure in Canada.
Kraft Hockeyville has established a legacy of helping Canadian communities restore their local hockey arenas while uniting Canadians through the love of the game. Canadians looking to nominate their community and arena should submit their story online at KraftHockeyville.ca before April 3rd at 11:59 p.m. EST. The 2022 grand prize winner will have an opportunity to host an NHL® preseason game and receive $250,000 to be used towards arena upgrades, as well as the coveted title of Kraft Hockeyville 2022. This year’s winner and each of the three-runner-up communities will also receive $10,000 to purchase new hockey equipment for their minor hockey programs, courtesy of the NHLPA Goals & Dreams fund.
Visit KraftHockeyville.ca for complete contest rules and program details.