ESPANOLA – The Espanola Junior A Hockey Club is pleased to announce the team's new name heading into the 2013-14 Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League season will be the Rivermen.
In a meeting Tuesday evening, Board Chairman Bill Clarke, released the results of an online voting poll with over whelming unanimous support.
Using the top submissions from the community input, the Community Steering Committee took to Facebook and held a “Name the Team” campaign during the past five weeks.
Results have shown that with the naming of this team, the community is looking for change and a new beginning.
“The new name shares the same new vision for the hockey club & our community, “said Clarke.
“As we begin building a new foundation for a team to represent this area for many years to follow, it is fitting that the team name is derived from the foundation that established our region and the various area communities,” offered Clarke.
“For thousands of years, by our First Nation peoples and later in the 19th century by fur traders, the rivers of our area were used as important transportation corridors and later used to transport timber from logging camps to sawmills on the Great Lakes as well as logs from our Northern forests to the paper mill here in Espanola. The Aux Sable River and Vermillion River were once used as transportation routes to our region. From the North, the Spanish River flows 338 kms throughout our communities, from the East, the French River flows 110 kms into the mouth of Georgian Bay. This area was navigated by canoe, using the lakes and rivers that still shape our landscape today.”
When Coach Tom McCarthy was asked about the team name, his first thought was of the history and traditions of the area, his comments were fitting.
“We are very proud to wear the new name as a tribute to those before us who helped shape the culture and the communities of this beautiful LaCloche Manitoulin Region. There is so much history here in the area of Manitoulin, North Shore, Spanish River, the many First Nation communities and the Town of Espanola. where we now live, work and enjoy a very unique lifestyle.”
McCarthy insists; “We are very lucky to represent our area forefathers where this team will live on with the tradition of our predecessors and follow their lead to work hard every day to be the best student-athletes and players that we can be while representing Espanola and the entire surrounding area. We will stride each day to become an organization that the entire area can be proud of, on and off the ice, while proudly representing the peoples of the area as the "Espanola Rivermen" of the Canadian Junior Hockey League!
(Nathan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)