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Sarnia to co-host major new hockey tournament this fall

Dave Paul Sarnia and Port Huron co-host a new hockey tournament this fall.

Dave Paul

Sarnia and Port Huron co-host a new hockey tournament this fall.

The inaugural 200 x 85 Bauer World Hockey Invitational boys A/B event will be contested at five arenas on this side of the river - SSEC, Clearwater, Sarnia, Point Edward and Mooretown – as well as Port Huron's McMorran Place and Glacier Pointe Arenas.

The Nov. 4-6 tourney will accommodate up to 100 teams.Bauer hockey tournament

The Bluewater event is actually an expansion of the Bauer World Invitational tournament that runs annually in Chicago. The 2016 version of that AAA/AA event will take place the same weekend as the Sarnia-Port Huron tourney.

The decade-old Chicago event is enormous and has vaulted Bauer, the hockey equipment manufacturer, into prominence as a tournament sponsor and administrator.

Last year's tournament features a record 430 teams, said Kevin Mann, president of Bauer 200 x 85 LLC.

“The Chicago event attracts over 12,000 hockey players and coaches, along with 35,000-plus family members, from 32 different states, Canada and Europe,” Mann told The Journal.

“The tournament games take place on 47 ice surfaces and 26 venues throughout the greater Chicagoland area.”

Mann said the tournament also has a “world-class feel” that includes a Chicago Blackhawks opening night reception, ex-NHL stars in attendance, ice carving and interactive games.

The Bauer World Invite is “looking to expand its footprint” with the A/B level Sarnia/Port Huron event, he said.

“Our number one priority was to align the Bauer A/B tournament in a solid location with great partners,” Mann said.

Vicky Praill, the special events and sport marketing co-ordinator for Tourism Sarnia-Lambton, said the organization is proud to be part of the first Bauer 200 x 85 offered in Canada.

The local tournament will feature teams competing in the Squirt-Atom, Peewee, Bantam and Midget divisions. Teams are guaranteed a minimum four games.

In addition to the Chicago AAA/AA and Sarnia-Port Huron A/B events, the Bauer tournaments will include a large girls event in Detroit, the weekend following the boys tourneys.

The organization also hosts a European AAA/AA boys tournament in August, in Bled, Slovenia.

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