SCHUMER MAKES FINAL PUSH TO BRING 2011 INTERNATIONAL YOUTH HOCKEY CHAMPIONSHIPS TO BUFFALO - MOVE WOULD BRING TOURISM REVENUE TO REGION FIT FOR WORLD-CLASS ICE HOCKEY
In Personal Call Today, Schumer Urges USA Hockey Executive Director to Choose Buffalo - Event Will Attract Top National Ice Hockey Teams From Around the World, Bring an Estimated $6 Million to Region City of Buffalo, Home to NHL Sabres and Hotbed of Youth Hockey, On the Shortlist of Cities to Host 2011 International Hockey Federation Under-20 World Championships
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Following recent news that Buffalo is on the USA Hockey's shortlist of cities to host the 2011 International Ice Hockey Federation Under 20 World Championships, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today ratcheted up the pressure for the organization to accept Buffalo's bid and bring the worldclass event to the city. In a personal call to USA Hockey, Inc. Executive Director Dave Ogrean, Schumer urged the federation to choose Buffalo to host the 2011 Under 20 Championships. With a decision pending, Ogrean confirmed that Buffalo had a strong bid, was a finalist and that its application was being thoroughly reviewed.
The Under20 World Championships attracts the top young ice hockey teams from around the world, and could bring an estimated six million in vital tourism dollars and a much needed economic boost to Western New York. Schumer touted the Buffalo area as ideal for the events, given its history of ice hockey support, proximity to Canada, and top of the line facilities.
"Western New York is the perfect pick for the 2011 championships," said Schumer. "Buffalo has a hat trick of reasons why they should host this tournament: its facilities are top notch, the hockey fan base is deep and active, and its proximity to hockeycrazed Canada. Buffalo would welcome teams from every corner of the globe with open arms, and in exchange the event would inject muchneeded tourism dollars into Western New York's economy."
After Buffalo submitted its application to host the 2011 International Hockey Federation Under 20 World Championships, Schumer wrote a letter in June urging the federation to accept Buffalo's bid and bring the worldclass event to the city. USA Hockey announced last month that Buffalo is among three finalists to host the event in December 2010 and January 2011. Members of the USA Hockey committee toured Western New York recently and said they were impressed with what they saw.
Located right across the border from Canada, Western New York has a passion for ice hockey from its diehard support for the NHL's Buffalo Sabres, to the thriving college and high school programs, to the thousands of young people and their parents who dedicate so much to this sport. Western New York has long been a hotbed of hockey enthusiasm, producing scores of first rate players including Buffalo native and first round, first overall 2007 draft pick, Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawk and winner of the coveted Calder Memorial Trophy as the best rookie of the 20072008 season.
The committee thoroughly inspected HSBC Arena and Niagara University's Dwyer Arena and announced that both hockey facilities easily passed their tests. Both facilities are capable of accommodating the teams and large crowds. Buffalo also offers a firstrate tourism infrastructure where visitors have access to architectural masterpieces, impressive theatres, art museums, a worldclass symphony orchestra, an historic zoo, and multiple professional sports teams, as well as a variety of hotels, transportation options and topnotch restaurants.
The event, which is a 10nation tournament featuring the best players under age 20 is estimated to deliver $6 million to the host community.
To ensure that Buffalo comes away with a win in the race to host the event, today, during a personal call to Executive Director Ogrean, Schumer urged the USA Hockey Federation to push Buffalo to the head of the pack, and bring the 2011 Under 20 Championships to Western New York.
"The City of Buffalo is a place where people are proud to come from, and proud to stay. This pride makes Buffalo one of the most welcoming cities in America," Schumer wrote. "The firstrate facilities, fantastic tourism opportunities and diehard passion for the sport would provide the perfect setting for these games and ensure that participants and attendees alike walk away with an experience they will long remember."
A decision is pending, after which a recommendation will be sent to the International Hockey Federation for final approval.
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