Whitehorse to host 2019 National Aboriginal Hockey Championships
May 12, 2018
(Whitehorse, YT) – The Aboriginal Sport Circle announced today that the National Aboriginal Hockey Championships (NAHC) will be heading North of 60 for the first time in the event’s history, as they selected Whitehorse to host in 2019.
More than 600 participants from across Canada are expected to take part in the annual event. The NAHC features 20 teams made up of elite female and male Aboriginal athletes, ages 15 to 18. Traditionally, Yukon athletes have participated as members of Team North – combined with the Northwest Territories and Nunavut.
“The 2019 NAHC Bid Committee received a world class bid from Whitehorse, Yukon and are pleased to confirm Whitehorse as the Host of the 2019 National Aboriginal Hockey Championships (NAHC). The Aboriginal Sport Circle looks forward to adding to the prestigious history of the Championships, when they co-host the 18th Annual NAHC in 2019,” said Jeff Spencer, Chair of the NAHC Working Group, Aboriginal Sport Circle.
Whitehorse’s bid to host the 2019 NAHC was submitted by the Yukon Indian Hockey Association (YIHA), in partnership with the Yukon Aboriginal Sport Circle.
“Hosting this event will provide immeasurable opportunity and experience for our Aboriginal athletes, and will enhance our community as a whole,” said YIHA President and Host Committee Chair, Michelle Dawson-Beattie, who is in Membertou, Nova Scotia for the passing of the torch from this year’s NAHC Host Committee.
“We have an experienced and committed team of volunteers in place, and we are confident the 2019 National Aboriginal Hockey Championships in Whitehorse will be the best championships to date.”
An initial assessment study completed by Sport Yukon showed the estimated economic impact of the 2019 NAHC at more than $1.4 million.
Dawson-Beattie said the Host Committee also plans to offer sport development opportunities for Aboriginal youth who are not participating in the NAHC, with a goal of increasing Aboriginal youth involvement in minor hockey.