Coaldale Copperheads Junior Hockey Team: Team History + Mission Stmt
You might ask years down the road....
"How did the Copperheads Junior Hockey Team ever begin back in the day?"
It all started back in 2006-07 when the Lethbridge Southern Express Junior Hockey team was having financial problems
As of August 2007, Levi Wiebe, son of Kevin and Kelly Wiebe, was on the roster of the Express for the first time in his career. It was clear to the Wiebe's after joining the Express's board within a month with lack of team volunteers present and in addition financial the team was in trouble for a future with the HJHL the following year. Together as concerned parents for future hockey players, the Wiebe’s took the opportunity to contact the Heritage Junior league to see if could relocate the team to another location if they headed up the task.
Prior to contacting the Heritage, Kevin a local businessman did some community research. He managed to secure some home ice from a close family/friend Kevin Fujita ,who was grandfathered the Coaldale ice but no longer needing it all for his men’s team. The Wiebe's went around town and collected a census from other business as to what support would be shown from the community for a junior team in Coaldale.
After positive insight from the community, Kevin contacted the HJHL executive.
The Heritage league offered them the rights to form a new team in Coaldale the upcoming season, which was to be in a 2 month time-frame. The team would include the rights to all past current Express roster members and exclude having to post a team dollar bond to the HJHL.
From that point on, the Wiebe's contacted numerous past hockey associates and formed a board of directors.
It took many voting meetings to finalize the official name and logo for the now known "Coaldale Copperheads."
It was a full-time job making major decisions - for examples:collecting sponsorship;ordering first set of jerseys and socks; scheduling games;collecting a coaching staff; ordering game tickets; admisision; signage; hotel bookings and serious time spent simply "getting the word out to recruiting players and updating the community" of the new team coming to small town Coaldale. (note: at the time, population of Coaldale was 6000)
Fun facts to remember: —Our official logo was created and designed ay a Coaldale native named Barry Overn. —Some other team names in the mix were- Venom, King Cobras, Pythons, and Chiefs. —Our first year of transportation to away games we rented two- 12 passenger vans for the players and used the Wiebe's cargo trailer to haul the equipment. —Of course, we had no skate sharpener for the team which the Coaldale Kinsmen bought for us the following year. —The team had no equipment storage room it was basically all stored in the Wiebe's garage for a few years. —A fun joke that goes back to the beginning of forming the team was a serious question from board member Gord Pickles," What if no one shows up?" It has been years of fun with this comment in various situations with the founders of the team. —Our first home game we didn't have our new jerseys in yet so we had to wear the Coaldale Minor Hockey midget set
Since the beginning, the founding members of Kevin and Kelly Wiebe, Kevin Fujita, Gord Pickles, Gord Elliott, Don Foxall and in 2009 member Harvey Pomreinke , have developed a junior successful hockey team in the HJHL.
The team has been welcomed and supported by sell-out crowds of spectators, rumor has it " largest and loudest crowd in the HJHL."
The board on behalf of the community can't say thanks to all those fans and dedicated sponsor contributors over the years. Without all of you, this team would not be where it is today.
COPPERHEADS MISSION STATEMENT:
The Coaldale Copperheads strive to offer additional opportunities to young men aged 16-21, while participating in the Heritage Junior Hockey League.
Our goal is to provide a positive experience, a strong competitive environment, while teaching life skills to our players, coaching staff and volunteers on and off the ice.
Our team aims to show respect, follow good sportsmanlike conduct while abiding by Hockey Alberta rules.
We will continue to be loyal and involved within our community; working together as a team to sustain a successful organization.
We believe the Copperheads growth to be endless, always searching for improvements in order to strengthen our reputation in the Town of Coaldale, and as a member of the Heritage Junior Hockey League.
All TEAM PHOTOS credited to
2020-2021- Team Photo and Season cancelled due to COVID-19 Pandemic
2019-2020 Team Photo
2018-2019 Team Photo
2017-18 Team Photo
2016-17 Team Photo
2015-16 Team Photo
HISTORY WAS MADE in 2015 when the Coaldale Copperheads won their first-ever
SOUTH AND LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP in the HJHL.
( 8 years later) Something that will never be forgotten by many!
Board members left to right-
Riley Honess, Gord Elliott, Harvey Pomreinke, Kelly Wiebe, Kevin Wiebe, Jessie Pomreinke, Don Foxall and Gord Pickles. 2015 Players with first ever HJHL South Trophy and League Trophy Coach Staff /Board Members- (left to right) Ty Odland, Jessie Pomreinke, Harvey Pomreinke, Jererey Kenyon,
Kelly Wiebe, Darren Emelson, Danton Shigemi, Kevin Wiebe,
Don Foxall, Gord Pickles, Gord Elliott, Derek Wiest.
Missing- Aaron Kaye and Griffin Pacholzuk-Fisher, Jenna Dobbertein
2014-15 Team Fun Photo
2014-15 Team Photo
2013-14 Team Photo
2012-13 Team Photo
2011-12 Team Photo
2010-11 Team Photo
2009-2010 Team Photo
2008-2009 Team Photo