It’s that time of year again, as the junior and minor teams hang up their skates for the year, and the industry workers start lacing theirs on. The 16th Annual Fort St. John Oilmen’s 4 on 4 Hockey Tournament is this week. It started on Wednesday, April 3 and goes until Saturday, April 6 at the North Peace Arena.
This year’s special guest is fan-favourite and moustache legend Lanny McDonald. Who played seven years for the Toronto Maple Leafs and eight years for Calgary Flames, captaining the Flames to their first and still only Stanly Cup win in his final season.
This will be McDonald’s sixth time attending the tournament as special guest, but first in more than five years, and first as a key note speaker.
“He’s often said the Oilmen’s tournament is one of his favourite to be a part of, and we’re happy to have him back,” said tournament organizer Lee Hartman.
McDonald’s character is what makes him stand out the most and a great guest.
“He’s such a gentleman, just has a way of making time for everyone and not having them feel slighted. He’s very entertaining, plays jokes, and he treats everyone with such respect,” Hartman said.
There’s a slight change to this year’s tournament as teams started playing the night of April 3, after press time, following the annual player draft. The goal was to lessen the load so guys aren’t playing three or four games a day on the Friday and Saturday.
The Oilmen’s Hockey Tournament continues to draw new, younger members each year.
“We want to keep these things going a long time. Our membership is older, but the industry is getting younger and it’s important that we continue to get younger,” Hartman said.
Email sports reporter Dillon Giancola at email@example.com.