CHL,Red Deer and Master Card Step -Up to help Fort Mac


CHL, MasterCard, and Red Deer Host Organizing Committee Pledge Donations to Canadian Red Cross

Red Deer, AB – The Canadian Hockey League in association with the Red Deer Host Organizing Committee and MasterCard Canada, title partner of the MasterCard Memorial Cup, today announced three pledges to financially support the efforts of the Canadian Red Cross. The Red Cross donations will help the Fort McMurray community and those affected by the recent  wildfires.
On May 3, 2016, massive wildfires triggered the largest fire-related evacuation in Alberta history with tens of thousands of people forced to leave their homes in more than 12 communities, including Fort McMurray. Since that time the fires have continued to spread throughout the area and urgent emergency services are still required to support individuals and families affected by the devastation. 
“For the first time in 42 years the Memorial Cup will be presented in Alberta,” said CHL President David Branch. “While we join here in celebration of our great game, may our thoughts extend to the residents of Fort McMurray, a great hockey community, and the many Albertans affected by the tragic wildfires.  On behalf of the Canadian Hockey League, we pledge our support to the Canadian Red Cross to help those in need during this most difficult time.”
Financial support to the Canadian Red Cross will include a $50,000 donation from the CHL, along with the proceeds from 50/50 draws during the first three games of the 2016 MasterCard Memorial Cup donated on behalf of the Red Deer Host Organizing Committee. 
“The Red Deer Host Organizing Committee is proud to do their part in supporting the people of Fort McMurray,” said Merrick Sutter, Co-Chair of the 2016 MasterCard Memorial Cup Host Committee. “Central Albertans have consistently rallied around causes such as this and we know the funds will go towards the rebuilds of one of Alberta’s most vibrant communities.”
In addition, MasterCard will match donations up to $50,000 made through for a total donation of $100,000. Additionally, MasterCard will offer attendees at the tournament the chance to share their wishes for the people of Fort McMurray by signing a flag that will be sent to the city once residents return.
“Today and every day our thoughts are with the tens of thousands of Albertans who have been displaced or affected by the tragic wildfires in Fort McMurray,” said Milos Vranesevic, Head of Marketing, MasterCard Canada. “During times like these our priorities as community members become clear and just like so many Canadians who have reached out to offer assistance to those in need, we are eager to help.”
The 2016 MasterCard Memorial Cup takes place May 19-29 in Red Deer, AB.  The 98th edition of the CHL’s prestigious National Championship features the host Red Deer Rebels along with the Western Hockey League champion Brandon Wheat Kings, the Ontario Hockey League champion London Knights, and the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League champion Rouyn-Noranda Huskies. 
This season marks the first time the championship will be hosted by the province of Alberta since 1974.  Of the four competing teams, the Rebels and Knights have both hoisted the trophy once in 2001 and 2005 respectively while the Wheat Kings and Huskies are in search of their first title.    
The 2016 MasterCard Memorial Cup is proudly supported by MasterCard, title sponsor of this event for 18 straight years. 

Scott Harrigan
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