Local realtor and hockey club president Wayne Gatza was recognized Nov. 10 by Mayor and Council for his efforts in helping the community win $25,000 in last spring’s 2015 Kraft Hockeyville competition. Monies won have been used to make improvements to the Ray McDonald Sport Center. – Lucie Roy Photo

by Morinville News Staff

Eight months after Morinville rallied to be the next Kraft Hockeyville, the man behind the movement was recognized by Morinville Town Council for his efforts in helping the community win $25,000 towards improvements at the Ray McDonald Sports Center.

Mayor Lisa Holmes presented Wayne Gatza with the Pride of Morinville certificate at the Nov. 10 Regular Meeting of Council.

The Certificate read: “In recognition for all the hard work, dedication and vision that you brought to our town through the Kraft Hockeyville program. You inspired us all, brought our community together, and gave us a chance to celebrate the proud history of the Ray McDonald Sports Center. The memories that you helped us create will last forever.”

Gatza, always humble throughout the campaign, said he was appeciative of the recognition, but was quick to recognize those who helped. “I didn’t do this alone,” he said, adding he was appreciative of the support of Paul Smith and Ed Bulger who wrote the Morinville for Hockeyville song, and to the Morinville News for producing the accompanying video.

Morinville won $25,000 from the annual competition last March. That money has been used to install new lockers and seats in two of the arena’s dressing rooms. Remaining monies were used to purchase an ice divider that will allow two ice events to take place at the same time, and a new hot dog machine for the concession.

All items will be able to be moved to the new facility when built. The 70-year-old Ray McDonald Sports Center is sid to be set for demolition sometime in 2017 after the new facility is opened.

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