2019 Allan Cup gets title sponsor
2019 Allan Cup Committee Chair Steve Christie, Viking Projects Vice President Jason Halberg, Viking Projects President Rob Wilson, Lacombe Generals Co-owner and President Wes Gyori, Generals General Manager Jeff McInnis and Viking Projects Partner/Project Manager Paxton Morrison formally unveil Viking Projects Ltd. as the title sponsor of the 2019 Allan Cup tournament on Tuesday morning. The tournament will be hosted by the Generals next April. (Ashli Barrett/Lacombe Globe)
The Lacombe Generals have found their title sponsor for the 2019 Allan Cup.
On Tuesday morning, Viking Projects Ltd. was unveiled as the official anchor sponsor of the national senior men’s AAA championship tournament which will be held in Lacombe next April.
Generals General Manager Jeff McInnis said the announcement made hosting the tournament a little less surreal.
“This gives the tournament a foundation,” he said. “We have all these ideas, but how are you going to do it without a sponsorship? You can’t without it – we’d fall flat on our face if we didn’t have people who believed in us. For Viking to say they believe in us, it makes it all real.”
The Generals were named as tournament hosts in mid-January, but are no strangers to the tournament, making more appearances than they’ve missed over the past decade. They’ve hosted once before as the then-Bentley Generals in Red Deer in 2013, where McInnis said they raised the standard for what a tournament should look like.
During a year where the Generals franchise itself will celebrate its 20th season, their intention is to do more.
“In Red Deer in 2013 we put on quite a show. We came in from Bentley and hijacked the place and threw this big party,” he said. “With that knowledge and what we have here in Lacombe, we think we can do better.
“It’s a chance to showcase who we are. We’re pretty proud of our facility, the community support and the people who believe in us. It’s a chance to show it off.”
The support for the team, he says, stems from community pride. He referred to Rogers Hometown Hockey and its stop in the city, how the community embraced the event, and said they’d look to build on that success.
Finding a title sponsor – and a local one – is key in doing so.
Rob Wilson, president of Viking Projects, said it was an easy decision to commit to sponsor the event/
“When Jeff and Wes pitched the idea, it was no-brainer for us,” Wilson said.
“You talk about pride, passion in the community...We’re really looking forward to coming on board with the Generals and the Allan Cup, trying to drive our community and showcase to Canada how passionate we are about this community and organizations within our community.”
At present, no precise dollar figure has been figured out with regards to how much Viking Projects will put towards the tournament. The details are expected to be worked out in the upcoming months as planning moves ahead.
While the title sponsor is locked down, there are more opportunities for the community get involved with tournament, especially with regards to volunteers. Those interested in volunteering are asked to contact the Generals via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“We need volunteers,” said 2019 Allan Cup Committee Chair Steve Christie. “We know we’re piggybacking on a big event just south of us as well, so hopefully some of those volunteers will still be in the spirit and help with our event as well.