February 24, 2009

Grey Cup coming to Edmonton in 2010

98th Grey Cup returning to a “natural home for our national championship”: Cohon

Edmonton, AB – (February 24, 2009) — The Grey Cup is returning to the scene of some of its’ greatest triumphs.

Canadian Football League Commissioner Mark Cohon announced today that the 2010 game and festival will be held here in Edmonton, site of three of the most successful Grey Cups ever.

“Edmonton is a natural home for our national championship, and the tremendous national gathering that comes along with it, so we’re excited it will host the 98th Grey Cup,” Cohon said following the Edmonton Eskimos’ annual general meeting.

“Nothing brings Canadians together like the Grey Cup, and no one has a better track record as Grey Cup hosts than Edmontonians.”

The 2010 Grey Cup will be played on Sunday, November 28.

Edmonton’s three Grey Cups rank fifth, sixth and seventh on the all-time list of Grey Cups with the highest attendance: 60,081 in 1984, 60,431 in 1997, and 62,531 in 2002.

That 2002 game, which saw the hometown Eskimos play the Montreal Alouettes and Canadian singing star Shania Twain take the half-time stage, attracted nearly five million television viewers (on CBC and RDS).

With Calgary hosting the 2009 Grey Cup, this will mark the first time the Grey Cup is held in Alberta in consecutive years.

“Alberta is proud to be home to this national treasure two years in a row,” said Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach.

“The Grey Cup is a tradition that attracts fans from across Canada for a week of fun and excitement, topped by a world class sporting event. And I can guarantee our friends across Canada that the spirit of Alberta will be on full display, along with the legendary warmth of the people of Calgary and Edmonton.”

Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel said the “City of Champions” is ready to host one of the great sporting events in its storied history.

“We’re thrilled to welcome back the Grey Cup, and all that it delivers for a host city: hours of attention on national television, thousands of visitors, and tens of millions of dollars in economic activity,” he added.

“And then there’s that magical component that you can’t measure with a clock or a calculator, because the Grey Cup is such a special part of being Canadian, and hosting it connects Edmontonians to our fellow Canadians in a very unique way.”

The co-chairs of Edmonton Grey Cup 2010 – Eskimos President and CEO Rick LeLacheur and Eskimos Chairman Doug Goss – said this Grey Cup will be special for another reason.

“Edmonton’s football side was renamed the Eskimos in 1910, so 2010 will mark 100 years of Eskimo football here in northern Alberta,” Goss said.

“Hosting the Grey Cup is the ultimate way to cap off what should be a year of celebrating the deep bond between our game, our team and our city.”

LeLacheur added: “The people of Edmonton, and Eskimo fans in particular, have always held a special place in their hearts for the Grey Cup, so we’re very excited about 2010, and welcoming Canada to Edmonton for what we know will be a tremendous event.”