In the interest of speed, I’ll reprint Columbus Blue Jackets President Mike Priest’s letter to fans holding tickets to the 2013 All-Star Game weekend. Commentary will follow later.
Last January’s exciting news that the National Hockey League had awarded the 2013 All-Star Celebration to Columbus was a testament to the outstanding support of our fans, particularly season ticket holders like you, and spoke to the strength of Central Ohio as a hockey market. Unfortunately, due to the absence of a new Collective Bargaining Agreement between the NHL Players’ Association and NHL, we have been informed by the League that this year’s event has been cancelled.
While we are especially disappointed for our fans, who responded so enthusiastically to this event coming to Columbus, we believe that today’s news is merely a postponement. We can assure you that our commitment to bringing All-Star festivities to our city is as strong as ever. The NHL continues to believe Columbus will be a great host and will work with us to bring the event here as soon as possible.
For those of you who purchased tickets to either or both the 2013 Honda NHL All-Star SuperSkills Competition® or the NHL All-Star Game, you will receive a refund on all charges, including all service and processing fees. Refunds will be issued in the form of payment used for the original purchase (i.e., if a credit card was used to make the ticket purchase then the same credit card will be credited for the refund). If you have any questions regarding this matter, please call your personal Blue Jackets representative [name] at [phone number] on Monday or click here to see the official refund policy.
Over the past several months, our staff has worked extremely hard with the League, the Greater Columbus Sports Commission, our public officials and numerous members of the local business and hospitality communities on this project. Our goal was simple – to host the best All-Star Weekend the NHL has ever seen – and it remains our goal today. We believe Nationwide Arena, the Arena District and the entire Central Ohio community offer a truly unique setting for this event and we know Columbus will be a great host when the All-Star Celebration does come here.
We want to thank you again for your continued support of the Blue Jackets. We understand this is a challenging time for all of us who love the game of hockey, but we are confident we will get through it together. No one is as eager as we are to take the ice as we have made a number of significant improvements to our organization, highlighted by John Davidson recently joining the Blue Jackets as President of Hockey Operations.
We are dedicated to building a world class organization with a winning culture led by a team that competes at a high level every night and ultimately wins the Stanley Cup. We have turned the page on the past and together with you will achieve new levels of success in the future. As JD said at his introductory press conference, we’re going to do this “one brick at a time and build a team Columbus will be proud of.”