Burnaby, B.C. — After two years of COVID-19 pandemic cancellations, Burnaby Mayor Mike Hurley can’t wait to see the puck drop for this year’s edition of the Pat Quinn Classic minor hockey tournament. “I’m excited to see the young players back in all the tournament arenas,” said the Mayor. He adds that the tournament excitement is not only for parents of participating players but also for younger kids who aspire to take part in this event in the future. “The eight- and nine-year-olds can look up to the tournament players. It’s something for them to shoot for.”
Burnaby has hosted a holiday season minor hockey tournament since 1962. Mayor Hurley says the longevity of the event shows Burnaby is a hockey town. “I think it says a lot about how important hockey is to our community and how much it helps kids to grow up and see the value of sport.”
This year’s Pat Quinn Classic runs December 27 to 31 and will feature 44 teams including six from Washington, California and Arizona. Mayor Hurley has a special message for the teams that will make their way to Burnaby from the United States. “We hope they enjoy our facilities and city so much that they will want to come back again and again.”
Summarizing the anticipation for this year’s tournament, Mayor Hurley says it is great to be back. “It has been a long two years. It’s time to move forward again in a positive way.”
The Bill Copeland Sports Centre, in Burnaby Sport Park, is the feature rink for the 2022 Pat Quinn Classic. Other venues include Burnaby Lake Arena, Burnaby Winter Club, Kensington Arena, Scotia Barn and Planet Ice Coquitlam.
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BACKGROUNDER – THE PAT QUINN CLASSIC
The Burnaby Minor Hockey Association began hosting the annual December Bantam hockey tournament in 1962. It is now the longest-running event of its kind in the world. The tournament became the Pat Quinn Classic in 2015, named after the legendary player, coach, general manager and team owner. Pat Quinn is internationally-recognized as one of the hockey’s greatest coaches and ambassadors. Proceeds go to the Pat Quinn Scholarship Fund. Managed by Hockey Canada, the fund supports players in post-secondary education after their hockey careers. Quinn is one of the most recognizable faces in Canadian sport and has made an enormous contribution to sport in British Columbia and Canada.
The objective of the Pat Quinn Classic is to create a top international-calibre tournament in Western Canada to showcase local teams alongside some of the strongest programs in Canada, the U.S. and around the world. Organizers worked with the Quinn family to create a unique tournament that strikes the right balance between exciting hockey, skill and leadership development and community engagement. Pat motivated players at all levels to work hard on the ice and live with passion and integrity off the ice. The vision of this tournament exemplifies his love of hockey and his unwavering commitment to give back to the community.
After being cancelled in 2020 and 2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Pat Quinn Classic returns for a sixth edition in December 2022.