The beginning of an annual summer event and community outreach program kicks off this weekend in St. Paul.
The St. Paul Canadiens Alumni Foundation is hosting their first-ever golf tournament on Saturday while sharing key updates on how the group is looking to become more involved in supporting the community.
After golfers hit the links on Saturday, Alumni Foundation president Patrick Lamoureux will walk through the goals of these former Canadiens’ players, while shedding light on the special people who’ve contributed to over 65 years of St. Paul hockey.
“What we’re doing is we’re looking to enhance the community involvement, not only just in the community of St. Paul, but the greater outreach and our plan is simple,” said Lamoureux.
“We are going to collectively, through a very strategic financial engineering model, we are going to position the alumni foundation so that we can make sure that the St. Paul Canadiens Hockey Club is never underfunded, and that we can have grander things that we can do for the club and the alumni.
“The alumni work will go back to community, corporate and charitable initiatives.”
Lamoureux was a Canadien from 1985-87, winning a provincial championship in 1986.
He and his teammates have stayed connected over the years, mulling over the idea of an alumni group.
Then several months ago, president Rick Austin, another former Canadien, called Lamoureux to finally put the wheels in motion, leading to the event this weekend and a host of other special surprises.
The vision is to recognize the surrounding minor hockey programs in Mallaig, Elk Point, and Glendon, previous minor hockey programs in Myrnam, Two Hills, and neighbouring indigenous communities in Saddle Lake, Goodfish, and Frog Lake–along with St. Paul Minor Hockey.
Five players, two families, and two teams will be inducted into the St. Paul Jr. Canadiens Hall of Fame, while 18 previously unacknowledged championships will soon have their own banners and will be hung in the Clancy, just like the old Montreal Forum.
Not to mention, the Wall of Honour going up in the arena to recognize every individual involved over 65 plus years, which Canadiens memorabilia collector Pierre DeMoissac is helping with.
“You can imagine the work we’ve got ahead of us in 65 years to acknowledge the families, the contributors, the sponsors, the volunteers, players, coaches, medical staff, and I could just go on,” said Lamoureux.
“We’re taking steps to make sure that we bring within the community as a whole, because it is important.”
Tickets are sold out for the golf tournament, but there is a social on Friday night from 7:00pm-12:00am.
Lamoureux said if it weren’t for the pandemic, there would be 300-400 people at the event to celebrate the history of one the country’s oldest junior hockey clubs.
“The St. Paul Canadiens are one of the oldest. We believe in our research–because there’s nothing official–we believe that we’re at least in the very, very least in the top 10. Some of the old guys believe that we could be in the top five of the oldest junior franchises across Canada.”