Hockey Canada officially announced Thursday that the World Junior Championship will be co-hosted by Moncton, N.B. and Halifax, N.S.
The two cities will host from Dec. 26 to Jan. 5, 2023, at the Avenir Centre in Moncton and Scotiabank Centre in Halifax.
Russia was initially supposed to host, but the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) removed its hosting rights after the country invaded Ukraine. Canada has held the event 15 times since 1977, with Halifax and Sydney, N.S. last playing host in 2003.
International Ice Hockey Federation President Luc Tardif said he’s excited to see the tournament come to the region.
“These are two great cities with top-quality venues and passionate hockey fans who support junior hockey,” said Tardif.
“I commend Hockey Canada for finding two great hosts in such a short amount of time, and am looking forward to the 2023 IIHF World Junior Championship.”
Fans eager to get tickets can enter a draw for their chance to be the first to purchase them once they become available. Hockey Canada says more ticket information will be announced at a later date.
Meantime, Moncton Mayor Dawn Arnold said sporting events have unifying powers, saying that hockey holds considerable importance in the region, especially coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Coming out of a challenging two years, our region, hockey fans and players are ready to rally together to host the world and once again celebrate Atlantic Canada on the international stage,” said Arnold.
New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs said the event will showcase the province and provide an “unforgettable experience.” Meanwhile, Nova Scotia Premier Tim Houston added that this year’s championship will be “the best tournament to date.”
“We are ready to roll out the welcome mat for the teams, their families and visiting fans, and I’ll be in the arena with thousands of Nova Scotians, cheering at each and every game,” said Houston.