Despite the loss of the Kraft Hockeyville title for 2011, the town of Bentley is still smiling.
The winner was announced on April 2, live on Hockey Night in Canada.
Bentley easily defeated Brandon, Manitoba, 242,055 votes to 77,641 to win top spot in the West recently and made it to the top five but was defeated by Conception Bay South in Newfoundland who took the winning title of Kraft Hockeyville 2011 this past weekend.
The winner was decided by phone-in votes and Angel Hand, a member of Bentley’s Hockeyville committee says, “There were a lot of people voting. People spent the whole day voting. It was fabulous. People sat there for hours voting. It’s been a really neat contest.”
Hand helped organize several voting sessions and voted many times herself. Voting was restricted to March 20 and 21, but there was no limit on the number of times anyone could vote.
This is the third year that hockey-crazy Bentley has entered the Hockeyville competition.
As one of the final five Bentley is still smiling because each finalist will receive $25,000 to upgrade its arena.
Bentley’s arena was built by volunteers in the 1960s and Bentley mayor Joan Dickau says the money will be well spent.
Kraft Hockeyville is a reality TV contest in which communities across Canada compete to demonstrate their passion and commitment to ice hockey. The final winner get’s $100,000 for their arena, a Hockey Night in Canada broadcast and an NHL pre-season game in their community.
On Feb. 16 and 17 a CBC crew visited Bentley to see how passionate the community was about hockey and Dickau said they were very impressed. Virtually the whole town turned out and there was endless hockey at all levels from peewee to the triple AAA Allan Cup contending Bentley Generals.