Relive the action-packed Young Stars Classic in Penticton

Young Stars sign of vibrancy

Penticton was host to some of the brightest up-and-coming new talents in hockey and crowds of spectators this past weekend, during the 2023 Young Stars Classic at the South Okanagan Events Centre.

Over four days, the SOEC hosted six games featuring rookie teams from the Edmonton Oilers, Vancouver Canucks, Winnipeg Jets and Calgary Flames.

Roughly 12,000 spectators overall enjoyed the atmosphere and cheered on their teams.

"The tournament went extremely well," said SOEC general manager and regional vice president Dean Clarke.

"Penticton really needed this type of events, you know, after the travel ban and the fires and the fizzle that we had in August to the tourist season. I'm very proud of our organization, [and] the Canucks organization, to be able to put this put this tournament on. Really happy for Penticton itself."

Moments that stand out for Clarke include seeing Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel and Penticton Mayor Julius Bloomfield welcoming everyone, and the crowds of people after a tough summer.

"The other thing, too, is the Canucks were really aware of how the region had sort of taken a hit this year, and [they were] amazing they were when it came to being committed to the tournament and following through on their commitments," Clarke added.

"They're a great organization, and we're a great partner with them."

  • Edmonton Oilers Rookies 3, Winnipeg Jets Rookies 1
  • Vancouver Canucks Rookies 7, Calgary Flames Rookies 1
  • Winnipeg Jets Rookies 3, Vancouver Canucks Rookies 2 (Shootout)
  • Calgary Flames Rookies 4, Edmonton Oilers Rookies 3 (OT)
  • Calgary Flames Rookies 4, Winnipeg Jets Rookies 2
  • Vancouver Canucks Rookies 5, Edmonton Oilers Rookies 2

One of Clarke's favourite moments was the exciting shootout between the Canucks and Jets.

"My son and his friends were at the game and yeah, that was a lot of fun to watch on Sunday afternoon!"

"That same week we had Bryan Adams, 4,000 people, and this weekend we're looking at 3,500 to 4,000 for Bonnie Raitt, and we had Jazz Fest in there too. So it has been super busy, a super needed infusion of economic impact from our bold facilities that we have in Penticton," Clarke said.

"To me, that's the real story, is getting us back into the groove of hosting people from from other communities."

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