The 2016 CIHL champion Smithers Steelheads. (Xuyun Zeng photo)

Council backs return of Smithers Steelheads

Town grants the club the arena concession, approves a beer garden and will pay for centre ice logo

The Smithers Steelheads recently scored a hat trick.

On June 11 council unanimously approved a formal request from the team to take over the lease on the Smithers Civic Centre concession stand, as well as a request to have a beer garden area where they can serve alcohol.

The Town also approved a request from the team to cover the cost of installing the centre ice logo at the arena.

One of the reasons that Coun. Frank Wray said he supported the request to have the Steelheads take over the lease, which will be issued at a dollar a year, was that the stand itself is quite derelict and the organization can clean it up cheaper than the Town.

“It would be much cheaper for the Steelheads … [they] can use in-kind labour, they can use donated materials, whereas we cannot,” Wray said.

The Town was clear that all renovation costs for the concession stand would be borne by the team.

As for the suds, the final plans for how a beer garden will be carried out are still on ice, but the town has approved the request in principle, with staff being directed to work on a policy to bring back to council.

Coun. Gladys Atrill said she sees the request as a net positive.

“It is an opportunity for the Steelheads to be more successful financially [and] with the right regulations around it and sectioning off a portion of the arena I’ll support it.”

In their decision to fund the team’s centre ice logo, the stencil, paint and man-hours required to put it together, council acknowledged that there was a cost to be borne but that it was a small one and, in the long run, an investment.

“I’d love to see the town support the team [getting] up and running,” said Mayor Taylor Bachrach. “Although it foregoes sponsorship revenue, the team is going to rent ice from us.”

Wray floated the idea that, ideally, he would like to see the stencil funded by a sponsor of the team.

“I’m happy to provide paint and staff time to do it every year but it would be nice if they could find a sponsor.”

During the discussion Bachrach posed a question to Laura Aspenlind, the recreation coordinator with Smithers Recreation, Parks and Culture.

“Is the team playing in the arena going to bring in enough revenue to more than cover the cost of the logo this year?”

“That would be the hope,” said Aspenlind.

“They have about seven home games in a season [and] they’ll also rent the ice for practices, weekly practices and there’s a portion of tryouts as well,” she added.

In the end council decided to cover the cost and labour of installing the logo, approximately $1,000, with the money coming from the arena’s operation budget.

The Steelheads haven’t had a team in the CIHL since the 2017-2018 season.

The team won the CIHL championships in the 2015-2016 season.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Town grants Chamber $20K

Chamber estimates up to $65K in lost revenue, turns to council for help

COVID-19 highlights lack of connectivity in First Nations communities

Many don’t have access required to utilize online platforms, says First Nations Technology Council

Salmon closures announced for Skeena and Nass watersheds

DFO notice expands on May 21 chinook ban throughout Skeena watershed

New Salt Boutique the realization of a vision for owner Caroline Marko

Marko combines the rough and the soft in a minimalist, clean airy space

Coastal GasLink pipeline work ramps up

With spring thaw ending, workers start to arrive for summer season

QUIZ: Test your knowledge of the world of summer sports

In a typical year, there are plenty of summer sporting events and tournaments held across Canada

Surrey mayor’s party under fire for ‘sickening’ tweet accusing northern B.C. RCMP of murder

Mayor Doug McCallum says tweet, Facebook post ‘sent out by unauthorized person’

Father’s Day Walk Run for prostate cancer will be virtual event this year throughout B.C.

The annual fundraiser for Prostate Cancer Foundation BC has brought in $2.5 million since 1999

Dr. Bonnie Henry announces official ban on overnight kids’ camps this summer

New ban comes after talking with other provincial health officials across the country, Henry says

Senior man in hospital after unprovoked wolf attack near Prince Rupert

Conservation officers are on site looking for the wolf

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

VIDEO: NASA astronauts blast off into space on SpaceX rocket

Marks NASA’s first human spaceflight launched from U.S. soil in nearly a decade

‘I knew what he wanted’: Kootenay man spends hours in tree as black bear patrols below

Francis Levasseur is no stranger to the outdoors, but a recent run-in with a bear caused quite a scare

PHOTOS: U.S. cities brace for increasing unrest over police killing of George Floyd

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz has fully mobilized the state’s National Guard

Most Read