NHL Celebrates launch of 2008-2009 season with Bud Light Hockey Challenge in Montréal

    New hockey festival to feature full slate of free activities on Crescent

    MONTREAL, Oct. 2 /CNW Telbec/ - Hockey's back, and this year the season
is starting off with a bang! On October 9, The National Hockey League (NHL)
will launch its 2008-09 season in style in Montréal at the Bud Light Hockey
Challenge(TM) in association with the NHL Face-Off(TM) 2008. The new three-day
hockey festival, taking place Thursday, October 9 through Saturday, October 11
on Crescent Street in downtown Montréal, will feature a full slate of free
activities for hockey fans, live entertainment each night, and competitions on
an 18-metre hockey rink in the middle of the street.
    "Montréal will be the centre of the hockey world this season," said Dave
Morissette, former Montréal Canadiens left winger and spokesperson for the
event. "With the NHL All-Star game coming to town this year, and the Bud Light
Hockey Challenge, we will certainly see a huge amount of excitement. This
event is our way of saluting the passion of hockey fans and offering them a
chance to have a whole lot of fun while celebrating the game."
    "NHL Face-Off 2008 is about celebrating the return of the hockey season
by providing interactive opportunities for our fans to directly connect with
the brand," said Keith Wachtel, Senior Vice President, Corporate Sales and
Marketing for the NHL. "We are excited to team up with Bud Light to offer this
exciting experience for fans in Montreal."

    Activities for everyone

    Crescent Street will be completely transformed to host a multitude of
free activities. Fans and curious onlookers are invited to check out the music
presented on the Bud Light stage, as well as compete for prizes in contests
that test their skill at puck target shooting, table hockey, knowledge of
hockey trivia, and agility in donning hockey clothing and gear. As well, there
will be four large exhibitions on display on the history of hockey.
    In addition to Morissette, celebrities will be on-site, showing off their
talents on the 18-metre rink on Crescent Street in exhibition games, being
held at lunch hour and happy hour on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
    "We offer the perfect location for hockey fans to enjoy the sport outside
of the stadium," said Bernard Ragueneau, President of the Crescent Street
Merchants Association. "We offer easy access to public transportation, and
along Crescent Street there are many terraces and restaurants and places to
enjoy the games. We will be rolling out the red carpet."
    Crescent Street is pleased to welcome XM Satellite Radio, ScotiaBank,
Sports Rousseau and Honda's displays to the street.

    Charity hockey tournament

    The rink will also be the site of one main feature of the Bud Light
Hockey Challenge, the charity hockey tournament. The tournament features
16 teams made up of four players each competing for a grand prize. Teams are
drawn from companies who contribute the players and monies to the charity.
Thousands of fans are anticipated to watch the action. The winning team takes
home four tickets to the 57th NHL All-Star Game, taking place at the Bell
Centre in downtown Montréal on January 25, 2009.
    The event runs from 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. each day. Opening ceremonies
for the tournament take place at 12:30 noon on Thursday, October 9, and
closing ceremonies at 9:45 p.m. on Saturday evening. The first round of games
will be played over the course of the three-day event. The top eight teams
will advance to the quarter-finals on Saturday afternoon. The semi-finals take
place Saturday evening, and the tournament's championship game takes place
Saturday night at 9:15 p.m.
    "After ten years of creating exciting events for Montreal and Crescent
Street, I didn't think anything could top them off... until now," said Brian
Fogt, President of BBF Promotions and Events. "I am thrilled to be part of
this unique event."

    Proceeds to heart foundation for children

    All proceeds from the hockey tournament will be donated to Fondation en
coeur, Fondation québécoise pour les enfants malades du coeur (Québec
foundation for children with heart disease). The Fondation en Coeur was
founded in 1984 by Dr. Andrew D'Avignon and Dr. Anne Fournier, pediatricians,
cardiologists from the Sainte-Justine Hospital in Montréal, and by parents of
children with heart disease. The foundation's mission is to provide children
suffering from heart disease and their parents with information and social
support and to contribute to improving medical services available to children
in need. For more information on the en Coeur Fondation please visit their
website www.fondationencoeur.com.

    NHL and the NHL Shield are registered trademarks and NHL Face-Off is a
    trademark of the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.

For further information:

For further information: Johanne Lépine, Torchia Communications, (514)
288-8290, ext. 234, jlepine@torchiacom.com; Julie Tremblay, Torchia
Communications, (514) 288-8290, ext. 214, julie@torchiacom.com

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