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Roller Goodwin tournament set for Whitney Forum return

After a few seasons away, the Roller Goodwin Hockey Tournament is returning to the friendly confines of the Whitney Forum this weekend.
Roller
A goalie waits out the play in the other end during the Roller Goodwin Hockey Tournament.

After a few seasons away, the Roller Goodwin Hockey Tournament is returning to the friendly confines of the Whitney Forum this weekend.

After being last held in 2018, the tournament that serves as a homecoming of sorts for hockey players with Flin Flon ties will take place from July 29-31. A social will take place July 31 at the Flin Flon Community Hall following the tournament.

The tournament will feature a collection of teams made up by either family members, friends or former teammates, starting at 4 p.m. July 29 with a game between the Firemen and the Donaghy family. Thirteen teams are currently planned to hit the Forum ice throughout the weekend.

This year’s tournament has been organized by the Flin Flon Bombers, with the tournament serving as the unofficial season kickoff of the Forum’s ice surface for the season. The City of Flin Flon kept the ice in during the late spring and into the summer, but shaved it down to a point where the surface could not host games - just enough to allow for a quick return to operation for the tournament.

Along with the ice will be some of the new improvements made to the rink over the summer - most notably, a brand new video scoreboard at centre ice and a new press box on the rink’s west side (over the benches).

In the past, former Bomber luminaries from the recent and distant past have taken part - while a Bomber alumni team has been entered, other players with ties to the club will take part on separate teams throughout the weekend.

“It’s all about having fun and having a reunion for people that are tied to our great community,” said Travis Rideout, Bomber board president and one of the tournament’s lead organizers.

Named in memory of local hockey player, miner and motorcycle aficionado “Roller” Goodwin, the tournament has been held since 1973, with two separate editions - one taking place in a city somewhere in western Canada each Easter weekend, with the other happening every even-numbered year at the Forum. The last tournament in Flin Flon was slated to take place in 2020, but the COVID-19 pandemic snuffed those plans out.

“We’re looking forward to having it after a four-year hiatus,” said Rideout.

“It’s been way too long.”