SIOUX LOOKOUT -- The Sioux Lookout Bombers are holding an information session and open house on Thursday evening to provide details to committed and potential billet families about hosting players for the upcoming season.
James Brohm, director of communications and marketing for the team, said, “we’re looking at anywhere between 20 and 25 [families], depending on how many [players] we have active on our roster.” He added the team has gotten lots of interest, with about 20 potential families offering, however only six had confirmed as of earlier this week.
“At this point, we have only one rostered player who’s actually from Sioux Lookout, so the rest of our roster will have to be housed somewhere,” said Brohm. “If all of our maybes said yes, we’d be okay.”
Brohm said the goal of the information session, “is to give [families] as much information as possible to help them make the best decisions for their families and hopefully to take a player and to grow our hockey family a bit more.”
He said the team will also give an update on their inaugural season, with the head coach, Carson Johnston, attending as well.
While the new team has no connection to the Flyers, the former SIJHL team in Sioux Lookout that last played in the 2012-2013 season, some of the billet families also hosted players for that team, said Brohm.
“They have players that come back regularly in the summers to visit. And that’s kind of what we want to push, you know? That these kids are not just coming here to play hockey… they’ll be part of your family. You’ll form a lifelong bond with these kids.”
Brohm said at a minimum, families are asked to provide room and board, but no transportation is necessary. Perks for hosting a player, he added, include a pair of season passes, a stipend to help with costs of groceries, and invitation to special events. The players will be here from the end of this month to prepare for main camp in September until the end of the season which could run as late as May if the team makes a deep playoff run, he said.
Brohm said the players will have a lot of stuff to do. “They have a day job, which is their hockey skate. We also have arrangements that we’re making with Confederation College campus here to help kids get prepared for post-secondary education if that’s the path they're taking,” he said, adding many will also find ways to volunteer in the community.
The information session and open house takes place Thursday from 6:30 until 8:30 p.m. at the Sioux Lookout Golf and Curling Club.
Eric Shih, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Thunder Bay Source