By Kenn Oliver
The Avalon Minor Hockey Association resolved its dispute with the operators of Rogers Bussey Arena a couple of weeks ago, but there’s some lingering concern the organization is not out of the woods just yet.
“Because of the negative publicity over the summer months, we are concerned that we might get people trying to play with St. John’s (minor association) even though they’re not supposed to,” suggests Avalon minor president Aiden Craig, adding that even a 10 percent drop could have significant impact on his association.
Under the current system, generally, the school a child attends dictates which minor hockey association they play with. Craig says while they’re not too concerned with returning kids, there’s some trepidation that parents of squirt or novice players may be scared off.
“The bigger concern are the kids who weren’t a member of our association last year but want to start playing this year and don’t know where to go and are kind of shying away because of the stuff we went through over the summer with the rink,” says Craig.
Not long after the hockey season ended, Avalon Celtics executive received notice that a five-year lease contract with the Rogers Bussey Arena signed in August of 2012 was being terminated due to alleged breach of contract.
Avalon Celtics decided to take legal action against Rogers Bussey Arena Inc., in the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador, but before the matter went before a judge. both sides reached an out-of-court settlement and signed a new three-year contract.
“The legal stuff and the business side is behind us,” says Craig. “Hopefully, the hockey part of it will be starting up soon and moving full steam ahead.”