A special event commemorating the history of Indigenous hockey players in the St. Paul area will have to wait until the fall.
The St. Paul Canadiens Alumni Foundation in collaboration with the NHL Indigenous Alumni have elected to postpone the game to the fall of 2022 as restrictions have increased around international travel. The game was scheduled for January 15, 2022.
In a brief release sent to Lakeland Connect on Dec.16, organizers explained the decision.
“Regrettably, due to the recent travel restrictions that the Government of Canada has implemented on December 15, 2021, both the NHL Indigenous Alumni and the St. Paul Canadiens Alumni Foundation have decided to defer our NHL Indigenous Alumni vs St. Paul Canadiens Alumni Foundation event to the fall of 2022,” the release said, signed by Pat Lamoureux and John Chabot, presidents of each organization.
“As NHL players may be travelling into Canada, we are concerned of their wellbeing being held up at the Canada-US Border and we cannot afford to allow anyone to be in harms way.
“We understand that many people have been associated in planning this event and we’d like to thank everyone involved,” the release said.
The event was meant to highlight the contributions from Lakeland-area First Nations hockey players who have been part of the more than 65 year history of the Jr. Canadiens franchise. The Alumni Foundation estimated that over 150 Indigenous players have donned the rouge-bleu-and blanc.
The event was originally planned to happen in the fall of 2021.
The Alumni Foundation’s first event took place in 2020.