The PJHL is pleased to announce the approval of a new franchise for the Sunshine Coast, set to begin play in the 2024-25 season.
While the new franchise is yet to decide on a team name, the club will play out of the Gibsons and Area Community Centre. This past season the PJHL was hosted by the Sunshine Coast Junior Hockey Society on 2 occasions for 4 regular season games to sell out crowds.
A group headed up by Rick Hopper and Stu Frizzell representing local business owner Julie Reeves and investor John Hulstein approached the PJHL in late 2021 with a proposal to bring Junior hockey to the Sunshine Coast. After many discussions, projections, planning, and test games the PJHL board of governors felt assured the new franchise will be a benefit to the league.
“We have had discussions over this project for a long period of time. I feel we have done some great due diligence and our testing of games and game operations and support was fantastic” said PJHL commissioner Trevor Alto. “We were able to get to a point where we feel confident in the ownership group and plan that this franchise will be a very positive member of the PJHL”.
Reeves, who has been a business owner on the Sunshine Coast for many years, has been a driving force behind this project. John Hulstein is no stranger to Junior Hockey being involved with the Powell River Kings previously, and the operations team of Rick Hopper and Stu Frizzel round out an excellent management group.
“Coastal Sports & Entertainment Groups majority shareholder, Julie Reeves said, “We are thrilled and honoured to join the PJHL and bring junior hockey to the Sunshine Coast” adding that “this is a legacy acquisition that can be enjoyed and leave an impact for years to come, we can’t wait to get started!”.
The Sunshine Coast has a history of providing great minor hockey, last winning BC Minor Hockey Association of the Year in 2019. The new franchise will get community participation and input to come up with a team name and logo which will be unveiled later this year.
Stay tuned to the PJHL website and socials for further development over the course of the next season.