The Bonnyville Pontiacs training camp will be held in Frog Lake until the RJ Lalonde arena gets ice.
There have been mechanical issues at the Centennial Centre for the past few weeks, meaning no air-conditioning for patrons, and now a travelling training camp for the Junior A hockey team.
“It’s obviously not ideal. I wouldn’t call it a setback. It’s no one’s fault. Sometimes things break down and you just have to deal with what the circumstances are…we’ll deal with it and roll with the punches and see if we can make it a teambuilder,” said Robb Hunter, director of business operations.
The Frog Lake New Horizon Centre, roughly a 70km drive from Bonnyville, will host practices and exhibition games until the RJ Lalonde arena is up and running with ice.
Pontiacs training camp is set to begin next Wednesday, with on-ice activites the following day. The refrigeration part is expected to arrive next weekend from across the border. The C2 ice crew will then work around the clock until the ice is finsihed – they hope by Sept. 3.
The Pontiacs looked all across the lakeland to find a facility with both ice and the willingness to share.
Lac la Biche, Cold Lake, St. Paul, Glendon all others were all approached, but most didn’t have ice or the capacity to host.
The New Horizon Centre is a 800 seat arena with gym and community facility. It will host one of the World Junior A Challenge contests coming up in December. The camp will be open to the public, and it is expected to draw lots of interest from the locals in the area.
The Pontiacs hired TJ Millar as their new Assistant Coach yesterday. He is taking over for Larry Draper.