NHL Faceoff Festival Two Weeks From Tonight in Winnipeg

NEW YORK (September 22, 2011) – The National Hockey League (NHL) will

celebrate the opening of the 2011-12 NHL season and its return to Winnipeg

with the 2011 Molson Canadian NHL Face-Off™ season-opening hockey and

entertainment festival in Winnipeg, October 6. The NHL will transform “The

Forks,” Winnipeg’s iconic downtown gathering point, offering fans live

musical performances, interactive hockey attractions, a live broadcast of

the opening night game between the Montreal Canadiens and Toronto Maple

Leafs from the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, and guest appearances from

George Stroumboulopoulos, host of CBC Television’s flagship late-night

program, George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight, and others. The NHL will

announce the exciting line-up of musical performers next week.

 

In addition, Winnipeg fans will be treated to a special live

introduction of the 2011-12 Winnipeg Jets™ team. CBC, VERSUS and NHL

Network™ will be on the scene in Winnipeg and will broadcast portions of

the festivities live to fans nationwide in Canada and in the U.S.,

respectively.

 

Molson Canadian will serve as the title sponsor for 2011 NHL

Face-Off™, marking its first activation since signing a landmark multi-year

deal to secure exclusive League rights in the beer sponsorship category to

become the Official Beer of the NHL®.

 

“While all hockey fans around the world are excited for the new

season, fans in Winnipeg have waited 15 years to have the NHL back,” said

Brian Jennings, NHL Executive Vice President of Marketing. “The 2011 Molson

Canadian NHL Face-Off will be a true festival and celebration with a great

combination of hockey and entertainment for fans joining us in Winnipeg and

fans tuning in across North America.”

 

“The start of hockey season is a national holiday in Canada,” said

Dave Perkins, president and CEO, Molson Coors Canada. “We plan to help the

NHL throw the biggest ‘welcome home party’ hockey fans in Winnipeg have

ever seen while also ushering in a new season of NHL excitement like only

Canada’s beer of hockey can. Game on!”

 

“We are honoured the National Hockey League has chosen Winnipeg and

the Jets to host the season-opening event for the NHL year,” said Mark

Chipman, Chairman & Governor, True North Sports & Entertainment and the

Winnipeg Jets. “The entire province has been captivated by the return of

the NHL to Winnipeg and we are certain the excitement and support of this

festival will be just like everything else so far this summer –

overwhelming!”

 

“We couldn’t be more excited to launch a new NHL season with CBC’s

Hockey Night in Canada live from Winnipeg,” said Julie Bristow, Executive

Director, Studio and Unscripted Programming for CBC. “Like Hockey Night in

Canada itself, the start of a new season is a rite of passage for Canadians

and we look forward to connecting fans across the nation with our coverage

of the euphoria and celebration of the return of the NHL to Winnipeg.”

 

From 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. CT, NHL fans young and old will be able to take

part in the free festivities — including attractions that test hockey

skills; prizing and giveaways; food, beverage and merchandise tents; and

live musical performances and the live game broadcasts on giant screens.

For fans 18 years or older, the Molson Canadian Hockey House hospitality

spectator area will feature live game broadcasts, cold beer and other

entertainment.

 

Attractions and additional special guests will be announced in the

coming weeks. Fans should visit NHL.com/faceoff for the latest information.

 

The Forks will feature video boards to showcase CBC’s Hockey Night in

Canada broadcast of the Canadiens-Leafs from the Air Canada Centre in

Toronto. CBC’s pre-game show, Scotiabank Hockey Tonight, hosted by Ron

MacLean, will cover the opening of a new hockey season live on location

from Winnipeg, Toronto and Vancouver, airing nationally at 6:30 pm ET. In

Winnipeg, coverage will deliver live musical performances and the

introduction of the new Jets team to fans. The entire Hockey Night in

Canada team prepare fans for the new season with the latest news,

information and analysis from Toronto and Vancouver, while also bringing

viewers the Stanley Cup® banner raising in Boston. The one and only Don

Cherry returns for the new season with a much-anticipated edition of

Coach’s Corner, airing live from Toronto during the first intermission of

the Canadiens-Leafs game.

 

VERSUS will offer live look-ins to the festivities in Winnipeg from

its set in Boston and its Stamford, Conn. studio. VERSUS’ coverage of the

Bruins home opener against the Philadelphia Flyers at TD Garden will start

at 6:30 p.m. ET with its pre-game show, followed by live coverage of the

Bruins’ banner-raising ceremony at 7 p.m. ET and the game broadcast. In

addition, VERSUS will carry highlights from the Canadiens-Leafs game in

Toronto.

 

NHL Network’s coverage of Opening Night will commence at 3 p.m. ET

from its set in Boston and will be on the scene in Winnipeg and in

Vancouver for the Canucks-Pittsburgh Penguins game at Rogers Arena,

wrapping its coverage at 7 p.m. ET. NHL Network’s post-game show will

feature highlights from Opening Night, including the banner-raising in

Boston and the 2011 Molson Canadian NHL Face-Off™ in Winnipeg.

 

NHL partners Scotiabank, XM, Canadian Tire, Frito Lay Canada,

Bridgestone, EA Sports and Reebok also will take part in the season-opening

festival.

About Steve Lepore
Contact me at stevemlepore@gmail.com

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