OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 19, 2012) - The board of directors of the Ottawa International Hockey Festival is pleased to announce that the Bell Capital Cup will return to the nation's capital on Dec. 28. The 2013 edition of this annual atom and peewee tournament will include 19 divisions, 380 teams and more than 6,500 players. This 14th edition of the event, which runs through Tuesday, Jan. 1, will officially kick off on Dec. 27 at the Bell Sensplex with the Bell Capital Cup Fanfest and Esso Friendly Games, which are open to the public.
"On behalf of the board of directors and our many volunteers, I would like to take this opportunity thank all of the minor hockey associations and administrators, players and families who continue to take part in the Bell Capital Cup and build on what is a splendid foundation for this annual holiday tournament," said Bell Capital Cup general manager Scott Lawryk. "This National Capital Region hockey extravaganza continues to showcase great minor hockey action, skills competitions and the Scotiabank/Canadian Tire all-star games. As always, the highlight of the festival will be the 1,000-plus hours of tournament games and the lasting memories they create for all participants."
The National Capital Region will welcome more than 20,000 visitors to the area for the annual tournament, with a community impact that has seen the festival raise more than $2.4 million in direct support of minor hockey and local charities since its inception in 1999. Widely recognized as the world's premier atom and peewee hockey tournament, the Bell Capital Cup has consistently generated a wide array of economic activity within the region, which will include the use of nearly 12,000 hotel rooms for this year's event.
Serving as honorary chair of this year's tournament once again is former Senators forward and Kanata native Todd White.
Teams at the 2013 Bell Capital Cup will be vying for the Allen J. MacDonald Memorial Trophy. This year's field will be comprised of teams from five different countries, including Canada (three provinces and one territory), China (Hong Kong), Finland, Germany and the United States (with representation from nine individual states).
The Bell Capital Cup's 19 divisions, including two girls groups, will play more than 800 games on 31 ice surfaces across Ottawa, from Stittsville to Navan and points in between. Each division's championship game will be played at Scotiabank Place over the course of three days, from Sunday, Dec. 30, to Tuesday, Jan. 1. Scotiabank-Canadian Tire all-star games are slated for Dec. 28 in all divisions, with the skills competitions taking place on Dec. 29 and 30.
The Ottawa International Hockey Festival is a non-profit organization with the mandate, as set forth by its volunteer board of directors, to support local children's charities and minor hockey. The Bell Capital Cup provides young athletes with an opportunity to compete against their peers at a high level, meet new friends and develop skills both on and off the ice in a fun yet competitive setting. Money raised from this year's tournament will once again support minor hockey and local charities. Last year, $150,000 was raised through Bell Capital Cup initiatives, bringing the 13-year total for the festival to more than $2.4 million.
Media opportunity: Members of the media are invited to Scotiabank Place on Saturday, Dec. 22, between 7 a.m. and noon for a photo opportunity as Bell Capital Cup general manager Scott Lawryk, tournament organizers and volunteers distribute trophies, pucks, tournament programs and signage to local arena representatives. Media are asked to enter Scotiabank Place via the Gate 3 entrance.