Please visit the links and support my friends and supporters!!!

Please visit the links and support my friends and supporters!!!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Rob Shick on THE PEAK this morning, Alberni Valley Charity Classic coming up!

Just a heads up that Port Alberni Native Rob Shick - pictured above with Her Majesty, the Queen, and The Great One... will be on 93.3 The Peak FM airwaves this morning just after 8:10am, talking about the upcoming Alberni Valley Charity Golf Classic.

What an amazing picture! 

Speaking of the Alberni Valley Charity Golf Classic - it's an amazing time, for a great cause. It never ceases to amaze me, to see the generosity of the people of this community. From business owners to average joes and janes, everyone does their part. It's why this tournament has raised over three quarters of a million dollars since it's inception by Rob Shick wayyyyyy back when golf balls were square. 

The 24th Annual Alberni Valley Charity Golf Classic takes place July 7th and 8th, at the Alberni Valley Golf Club, supporting Kidsport, Abbeyfield, Crimestoppers, The Bread of Life and the BC Children's Hospital. Friday is the reception, Saturday is the golf followed by the dinner and live and silent auction. 

If you have never taken part in the event, you've no doubt heard about it from your family or friends. It's a fantastic time, it's for a great cause, it's the Alberni Valley at it's best - call the Pro Shop ASAP to sign up as an individual or team at 250-723-5422. Not a golfer? You don't really need to be to take part in the tournament, but you especially don't need to if you just want to attend the dinner to participate in the festivities and auctions as dinner only tickets are also available. 


Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Zolnierczyk's blog, Alberni Golf Update - Men's Night, Family Day, Rotary's Golf FORE Kids!

Former Bulldog Harry Zolnierczyk has been blogging during the Stanley Cup Final - check it out on by clicking HERE

I'm always quite hesitant to tell a Coach how to .... Coach.... especially when the Coach in question has won one of those Stanley Cup things... but hey Mr. Laviolette, down 2-0 in the series, maybe you should consider putting Harry back in the line up for Game 3?

Just a thought.

A sizable update on all the things happening at the Alberni Golf Club - tonight is Men's Night, which is a 6:00pm shot gun start.

A great time, a great meal and always fantastic prizes! Call the Proshop to sign up at 250-723-5422.

Sunday is Family Golf Day - there's a lesson scheduled for 3:00pm, and a 4:00pm Shot gun start for 9 fun holes. It's free for those 16 and under and $20 for adults with complimentary refreshments and a BBQ to follow. Read below for more details on this fantastic idea!

Media Release – FAMILY GOLF

The Alberni Golf Club is holding a special Family Golf Day on Sunday June 4th.
For this event youth 16 and under will golf free, if they are accompanied by an adult golfer. For the adult the cost will be $20 for 9 holes.

Youth participants will receive a golf clinic, a tee gift, use of the practice facilities and balls. For those youth who don’t have golf clubs there will be some clubs available for use. Register by calling 250 723-5422 or arrive at 2:45 pm, register, then take part in the golf clinic from 3:00 to 4:00. At 4 pm there will be a shot gun start for a fun 9 Hole golf event. This will be followed by a hot dog BBQ at 6:15 compliments of Save-On-Foods and the awarding of a few fun prizes.

This year the Alberni Golf Club has created a special program to encourage youth play. Young golfers 11 and under will be able to golf FREE, while those 12 to 16 will only pay $5.00, as long as they are accompanied by a parent or grandparent.

More young children are taking up the game of golf than ever before. The National Golf Association reported an 18.5 % increase in participation while the Sport and Fitness Industry Association reported a 9% decrease in overall youth participation in the other major youth sports. Although these are US statistics I would suggest that Canadian statistics are not much different.

I think one can contribute these increases to family golf and to the moves golf clubs and golf associations have made to make golf more affordable. The Northern California Golf Association adopted a policy that on all their courses Kids up to 18 can play for $5. This program has now been adopted by 12 other Golf Associations throughout the US.

The Alberni Golf Cub has also incorporated a variety of tee boxes that will allow younger golfers to play from an appropriate distances for their strength and skill levels. Golf should be fun, so one wants to play from a distance where you can reach the green in the number of strokes applicable to the hole. Thus on a par three one should be able to hit the ball far enough to reach the green with one shot, a par 4 would take 2 shots and a par 5 3 shots. With the 2 putts one should take on each hole one would then be playing par golf. That is fun!

With these changes in the cost for youth, we are also hoping more families will come and enjoy the game of golf. Our club has open time in late afternoon and early evenings as well as on many Saturday and Sunday evenings.

One final update - speaking of the kids, why not sign up for Rotary's Golf FORE Kids! Sounds fun!


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Matt Hughes on THE PEAK 8:10 tomorrow. Evin, Ward move on

It's been a long time coming, but I'm happy to be able to get an Interview for you with new Head Coach Matt Hughes tomorrow on 93.3 The Peak FM at approximately 8:10am.

Please accept my apologies that it took so long. Just unfortunate timing, as the day his hiring was announced I headed out of the country on holidays. As I returned on Monday, Matt was out of the country and travelling back. He wasn't on holidays however, but a scouting mission instead.

If you missed the news on The Peak this morning, the Bulldogs are now looking for a new Assistant Coach and Athletic Trainer/Therapist with both Alex Evin and JT Ward submitting their letters of resignation. Evin has accepted a position as Associate Coach with the Prince George Spruce Kings, filling a vacancy left by the resignation of Head Coach Chad Van Dieman at the end of the season. JT Ward is also pursuing further opportunities.

As always, it's tough to see friends move on, especially quality people and solid professionals like Alex and JT. Both of them gave their all to the team and the community, and I wish them the best of luck in their future endeavours.

I'll especially miss my repeated triumphs over Alex in our season long Gin Rummy battles on the Ferry!


Tuesday, May 02, 2017

Bulldogs name Matt Hughes as Head Coach and GM

It wouldn't be a holiday for me if there wasn't some big Bulldog news happening...just seems to always be the way it works out. Here I am on night one of my hiatus, and I'm digging out the laptop and doin' some Blogging, but I'm happy to do it to get the word out.

Accept my apologies - I'll do my best when I'm back in the country to get an interview with Matt on 93.3 The Peak, and here on the blog.

Welcome to the team and the community Matt! Sounds like he's hitting the ground running, so say the least!


May 2, 2017


Port Alberni – The Port Alberni Junior Hockey Society and the Alberni Valley Bulldogs hockey club are pleased to announce that they have hired Mr. Matt Hughes as Head Coach and General Manager of the Alberni Valley Bulldogs. It is a 2-year agreement with an option for a 1-year renewal.

Matt comes to the Bulldogs from the highly respected Pursuit of Excellence hockey academy in Kelowna BC where he was the Head Coach of the U18 Midget Prep team. Pursuit’s emphasis on hockey development, academic excellence and community service deemed Matt an excellent fit for the Alberni Valley Bulldogs core beliefs. Matt has helped more than 30 of his past players obtain NCAA Division 1 Scholarships.

“Our search for a new head coach saw an overwhelming amount of interest in the Alberni Valley Bulldogs.” says Port Alberni Junior Hockey Society President Ron Paulson. “It speaks volumes to the reputation of the Alberni Valley Bulldogs franchise, and the reputation of the BCHL.” Over 100 resumes were received for the Bulldogs Head Coach/GM position.

Prior to the Pursuit of Excellence academy, Matt spent 11 years coaching competitive junior hockey in the Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL), North American Hockey league (NAHL), and BCHL. Matt coached the AJHL Grande Prairie Storm as Assistant Coach, Head Coach and General Manager from 2012 to 2014. Matt also served as Assistant Coach and Assistant GM of the NAHL Dawson Creek Rage from 2010 to 2012. Prior to the Rage, Matt served as Head Coach and Assistant GM of the BCHL Salmon Arm Silverbacks.

In 2008 & 2009 Matt was the Assistant Coach and Video Coach for the Hockey Canada World U17 program, winning Silver in 2009 and helping develop young player such as Ryan Nugent Hopkins, Mark Pysyk, and Brendan Gallagher. Matt’s career started in 2003 with coaching stints with the KIJHL Summerland Kings, Columbia Valley Rockies and the BCHL Quesnel Millionaires.

"I would like to thank the Bulldogs organization for this opportunity. The Alberni Valley is an amazing community with a knowledgeable and enthusiastic fan base.” said Matt. “I'm looking forward to the work we have ahead of us."

Matt starts work immediately, recruiting for the 2017/18 season. He will be overseeing the Bulldogs Osoyoos spring identification camp along with Assistant Coach Alex Evin and the rest of the Alberni Valley Bulldogs scouting staff. Matt’s also burning up the phone lines contacting his network of players and scouts, identifying new players and key prospects. For more information, please contact: Ron Paulson

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Alberni Golf Club Update

Man, is it time for golf season yet? I'm half of the belief that it's always golf season our here, being from Northern Manitoba...but the weather sure has been a drag! With my schedule with a couple of young kids it's easier said than done to get lucky and be able to get out and play on the one or two nice days we've seemed to have since...... September?

When it comes to the Alberni Valley in the summer, it's a tie for me when it comes to where my favorite place is - it's either the lake, or the golf course. We are incredibly lucky to be blessed with both within minutes of our front doors.

I managed a round last week - I was very impressed with the course conditions, considering how wet it has been for the last couple of months.

The second Men's Night of the season is coming up tomorrow night, April 27th - always a great time, with great prizes and a great dinner at a great price, so make sure you call the Proshop to register ASAP at 250-723-5422.

Speaking of Bruce, thankfully he has a great sale right now on Pro V's, at the rate I lose them it's much appreciated! Ha!

Demo Days are coming up to try out the latest new products from Ping and Cobra - I'm a Cobra guy, but have always love the Ping stuff. The Ping night is May 11th and the Cobra night is May 18th.

The Alberni Golf Club holds their Junior Golf Open House Saturday, May 6th from 1pm to 3pm. 

Kids will receive instruction in driving/chipping/putting/etiquette etc, followed by a snack and refreshments. It's all FREE of charge.

It's no secret that I'm a huge fan of golf and a huge fan of the Alberni Golf Club. I have to sing their praises once more in regards to Junior Golf. Not only is the Open House great, and their program and rates fantastic, but I have been just blown away by the membership and the staff at the course and how they have treated my little guy Griffin since he has started golfing there over the last couple of years. One would think perhaps that a golf course isn't the place for a kid - I would have been one of those people. The reality is that it couldn't be further from the truth. Bruce, Kathy, Brian and all the staff have gone out of their way to make Griff feel welcome. Good, well behaved kids are welcome anywhere, and at the same time brats aren't! Whenever we are out on the course or on the range or chipping or putting everyone seems to take a lot of joy out of seeing a little guy out there.

Here's some pictures from the event over the past years...


Thursday, April 20, 2017

Great Harry Zolnierczyk story....

(image: Jamie Penner)

Here's a pretty cool story on former Bulldog Harry Zolnierczyk, who just last week became the first Bulldog to play in - and score a goal in - an NHL Playoff game.

Click the below link to check it out - mixed in with some great examples of Harry's perseverance and character is a funny video where teammates attempt to spell his last name!

(image: John Russell)

Click to read Playoffs Worth the Wait for Zolnierczyk


Thursday, April 13, 2017

Bulldogs make Coaching Change


Port Alberni The Port Alberni Junior Hockey Society and the Alberni Valley Bulldogs hockey club wish to announce that they have released Head Coach and GM Kevin Willison, effective immediately.

The decision to release Willison was made after much deliberation and consideration of the best interests of the team going forward.

‘Kevin has served both this team and our community with all his heart and we did not come to this decision easily’ says PAJHS President Ron Paulson. ‘We will miss his character and gritty determination that was reflected in the teams he put on the ice.’

During Willison’s tenure as Head Coach/GM the Bulldogs made the playoff in 4 of the 5 years, including winning the Island Division playoffs in 2013.

‘Both Bobbi and I have truly enjoyed our time here in Alberni.’ says Willison. ‘We would like to thank all of the fans and people in the community for their hospitality and friendship over the past 5 years.’

The Alberni Valley Bulldogs will start recruiting for a new Head Coach immediately. Associate Coach Alex Evin will be supervising hockey operations until a new Head Coach is signed.

For more information, please contact: Ron Paulson 


This is the part of the business I most certainly do not enjoy, as much as I'm well aware that it is certainly a part of the business. As a former Coach of a team I worked for in the MJHL once said "Coaches are fired to be hired" 

I'm sorry to see Kevin go. He's a great coach and even more importantly a better person. It's beyond tough to be in my position to not develop relationships with the people that play on or work for the team I work in conjunction with, simply due to the amount to time we spend together during the duration of a season. 

Having said that,  it is even harder to have everyone always get along due to the nature of the business and the ups and downs and highs and lows. Kevin has always treated me with nothing but the utmost respect, professionalism and class and was always a pleasure to work with, and I can't thank him enough for that. 

Looking at the human side as opposed to all the hockey and business side of things, I certainly don't want to have to tell my sons the news, as "Coach Willy" always had an open door for them when I'd pop by the rink for a pow wow during some of the precious few quiet times at the office and my family couldn't be more thankful for that. 

On the hockey and business side of things, I can understand why the decision to make this move was made, with the season the team had and how they finished out of the playoffs. I look forward to meeting the new coach, and what they do with the team and working with them.

My final thanks to Kevin back to the hockey side would be for all the moments going back to 2012 when he took the job here. The 2013 Island Championship is something I'll never forget - one of only two times that the Bulldogs played in the Conference Final, with the Nolan Graham led Bulldogs losing in Game 7 to Powell River in 2009-2010. While the runs weren't as long with losses in Game 7 in 2014 to Victoria and in Game 7 in 2015 to Nanaimo and Game 5 to Nanaimo in 2016, they were also a pleasure to cover. While last season was certainly a challenge to say the least, I was also incredibly proud of how hard he team played and refused to quit despite the circumstances late in the season.