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‘This is done:’ Hockey Calgary introduces boundary changes for minor teams as parents protest

The association boundaries have changed for minor hockey teams in Calgary, despite protest from parents and players who say they weren’t involved in the process.

Next season, some hockey clubs will be merged and others will be disbanded.

Kevin Kobelka, executive director of Hockey Calgary, said the decision to change the boundaries was finalized Monday night.

“This is done in our minds. This was the decision that was ratified and approved by the board of directors for Hockey Calgary last night,” Kobelka said Tuesday on The Eyeopener.

“The majority are very happy with the decisions we’ve made and we will go forward with this plan for the upcoming season and beyond.”

Kevin Kobelka, executive director of Hockey Calgary, said the boundary change decision was ratified and approved by the board of directors Monday night. (Justin Pennell/CBC)

More than 14,000 young hockey players compete in the city.

The process leading to the boundary changes took 18 months, Kobelka said.

Hockey Canada is changing to an 11 association model for community hockey. Some changes will happen in the 2019-20 season, and others won’t take place until 2021.

This news comes despite a protest involving young hockey players and their parents outside Hockey Calgary’s office at Max Bell Centre on Monday before the final decision was announced.

Danielle Melnyk’s children are on the Northwest Warriors team. She was at the protest Monday. 

“It’s disappointing, but I mean if this is in fact what is in the best interest, then we’ll jump on board. We’re not opposed to change, but we’re not ready to get rid of our community, either,” she said.

Danielle Melnyk’s children play on the Northwest Warriors. She said she wanted Hockey Calgary to do more consulting with the teams before making changes. (Justin Pennell/CBC)

Melnyk wanted the process to involve the parents and players further.

“It’s really easy to make decisions when you’re looking at numbers and looking at a map. But when you actually have the people involved, that’s a whole other level because you’re splitting up a community.”

The full list of boundary changes are detailed on Hockey Calgary’s website.

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