Family starts petition to keep Storm in Summerside

Stephen Brun
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Owners say negotiations with city are ongoing

Al Stewart of the Summerside Storm drives to the basket during an NBL of Canada regular season game against the Moncton Miracles.

SUMMERSIDE – Ken Trenholm and his family of six went to many Summerside Storm games during the pro basketball team's inaugural season.

His young children made posters, collected autographs and cheered for their favourite players during home games at EastLink Arena.

But Trenholm said their voices, along with those of all the other fans who supported the team, are not being heard now.

The team's owners and the city are in the midst of drawn-out negotiations for the Storm's second season. If those talks break down, it would almost certainly mean the team would play next season in Charlottetown.

That's why Trenholm started an online petition, asking Islanders to support the Storm staying in Summerside.

"The owners have a voice because they're meeting with the city, the city has a voice because they're meeting with the owners, so where do the fans stand?" he said.

"I just wanted the opportunity for the fans to have a voice and show that even in the off season they want the Storm to stay."

The petition went live a few days ago, and has amassed 40 names. Trenholm would like to see that number increase before forwarding the signatures to the city within two weeks' time.

The Storm finished the NBL of Canada's first season second-last in the standings. Despite the on-court performance, local fans flocked to the arena in record numbers, boosting the Storm to third best attendance figures in the seven-team league.

Owners Duncan Shaw and Darren MacKay hoped to have a deal in place with the city by last January, but no agreement has been reached to date.

Shaw said it's heartening to see fans wanting to show their support during the lengthy talks.

"This is the reason we've gone through... seven months of negotiation now because we want to stay, the people have been fantastic, the community's been fantastic," he said. "We're still at it; we're still trying to find a way to get a deal done."

About 250 season packages were sold last year, and those ticket holders are currently the only ones being reoffered seats for next season until negotiations are finalized. The team says about 80 per cent have expressed interest in renewing their tickets.

To view or sign the petition, visit: www.dreamsunlimitedchildcare.com/storm.

 

See the Journal Pioneer's print edition for more.

 

Organizations: Journal Pioneer

Geographic location: Summerside, Charlottetown, Canada

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Recent comments

  • Adam M
    May 01, 2012 - 17:54

    Let them go. Duncan doesn't need us begging to build his ego anymore. Look at what the genius did for Summerside, we are so ungrateful for all that he has done for us, bow down.

  • Dude
    May 01, 2012 - 16:28

    Just to clear something up, those "free" tickets that were given away were all paid for by sponsers to begin with.

  • Chris
    May 01, 2012 - 16:15

    To Jerry- The picture that is posted on this write up is an away picture. If you attended any games at all in the Credit Union Place and supported this team while in Summerside you would know the seats in the Credit Union Place are burgundy. I also agree with Mel on the support in Charlottetown and would like to add, Where are the Charlottetown Jr. A Abbies now, and where are the Summerside Capitals? Hmmmm no brainer to me!

    • Jay
      May 01, 2012 - 17:27

      Chris, why are you Jr Abbies and the caps? This is about Basketball ...plus I really wouldnt want them in Ch'town after being tainted by Sside

    • Chris
      May 01, 2012 - 21:01

      Jay, I bring up Jr. Abbies and the Caps for the same reason why Jerry brought up curling and how embarrassing the attendance was for the curling. I am well aware this is about basketball thanks. The point behind my comment was you have already lost one Major Jr. team due to poor attendance, on the verge of losing another one, so what makes you think you can keep an elite basketball team going from attendance?

  • give it up pei
    May 01, 2012 - 14:36

    It failed in Summerside and it'll fail in Charlottetown too. In fact, I see this entire National Basketball League folding up in the next year or two. It's a house of cards waiting to fall. Just like the AHL was here in the Maritimes.

  • Jimmy
    May 01, 2012 - 11:11

    Good luck....you'll need it

  • good grief
    May 01, 2012 - 10:48

    Most of the tickets were given away this past year,good way to get people into the building but the bills dont get paid that way.

  • Mel
    May 01, 2012 - 10:31

    To Jerry.... The City of Charlottetown has proven how supportive they are when it comes to sporting events as well. Look at your Rocket, times got tough and the support started dropping. Now they are on the verge of leaving the City of Charlottetown. I personally could care less where they go as I will travel to Charlottetown if I have to but in saying that I feel the ownership has to stop and think of the players in all this too. They gave up alot of their free time last year to draw the crowds that were there. Yes it may have been in their job description but to move it will mean it will be like starting all over again. The ownership have to stop and think of this time last year when they were looking to bring a team of this calibur to the Island and what Charlottetown's response was. That is how they ended up in Summerside to begin with. To move to Charlottetown will be the end of the Storm. They won't be able to compete with UPEI and Holland College basketball programs. If they give Summerside a couple more years they will see the support do nothing but grow. The people they are hurting the most are the young fans by prolonging this any further. Just make up your mind and announce it.

  • Whybother?
    May 01, 2012 - 07:02

    Why even bother with a petition? Apparently the incredible amount of support and everything Summerside did for them last year alone was not enough. Why BEG?

  • Jerry Bingley
    April 30, 2012 - 22:01

    Owners of ANYTHING are in business to MAKE MONEY. This seems to be a brain block for Islanders who think because they support something, and 88% of others DON'T, the business should stay for the chosen few. Look at the picture on this story here....Is that Mr. Trenholm's family with the other 4 people in the seats at Credit Union Place?? They came, they tried, they gave away more tickets per game than they sold, and now they are going to where 75% of their attendance per game came from...Kings and Queens Counties. It's simple Economics folks. Look at the support the World Curling got in Summerside, WITHOUT free tickets per game...Embarrassing to say the least. See you in Charlottetown, Storm!!

  • WTF
    April 30, 2012 - 19:01

    Well I hope the owners realized the city of summerside invested a lot for this team to be here, and for the owners to want a better deal is not fair. These guys are out to make their money of the backs of fans and summerside tax payers. I think the deal that was in place should be the deal they stick to. All I can say is I don't think Charlottetown is very interested in a unproven league, and this is just a ploy for the people of summerside to think it is the city that is at fault and not the poor owners that want so bad to stay here. People are smarter then you think Darren and Duncan.

  • Chris
    April 30, 2012 - 17:40

    Where is the online petition? You failed to put the link in your write up.