The world’s largest hockey stick is getting new lights.
The iconic hockey stick and puck on the Cowichan Community Centre will have a new, approximately $8,000, lighting system installed sometime this week, enabling changing colours and patterns for the first time, in addition to the classic white lights.
A press release from the Cowichan Valley Regional District said the district and staff at the CCC have heard requests for many years to see the lights illuminating the hockey stick, which is 205 feet long and weighs 61,000 pounds, modernized. This need was recognized recently as the sporting icon became a natural gathering place in the Valley for those rallying in sympathy with Humboldt, Saskatchewan, following the deadly bus crash involving the Humboldt Broncos junior hockey team.
Without the technology to change the colours of the lights, it was a sizable challenge to reflect the team colours of the Humboldt Broncos on the dark background of the stick for a vigil held on the property in 2018.
“We’re excited to use the new lights to better celebrate and support community activities and rejuvenate one of Vancouver Island’s most identifiable landmarks,” said Terri Askham, manager of the Cowichan Community Centre.
The new lighting system will enable changing colours and patterns, and is more energy efficient and easier to maintain than the older LED lighting.
The new lights are also expected to hold up better in extreme weather conditions.
The World’s Largest Hockey Stick, which is approximately 40 times larger than life size, was commissioned by the Canadian government for the Canadian Pavilion at the Expo 1986, that was held in Vancouver. After Expo, the hockey stick was transported to the Cowichan Valley by barge and three flat-bed trucks and has been displayed outside of the Cowichan Community Centre since May 21, 1988.