Posted Friday, March 3, 2023

People are asking why our 3 on 3 tournament changed its name from Rod Harquail Memorial to Yves M-Pelletier Classic, since the Rod Harquail has become a household event in the area. It’s certainly bad for business and kind of confusing, but honestly – we did it for old friends. Let me take you back to the beginning to explain.

The Dalhousie Youngtimers began hosting a 3-on-3 hockey tournament in the late 1990s, and it became a popular end-of-season tournament for local adult players of all levels. 

The Youngtimers dedicated the 2001 tournament to teammate Rod Harquail, a young father of two and husband who passed away accidentally in November 2000. Rod was a Youngtimer and athlete who had competed in high school and university sports. The Rod Harquail Memorial 3vs3 Hockey Tournament became an annual event held on Easter weekend.

Over the next few years, Rod’s family, the team, and many great volunteers grew the tournament and its family-focused social events into a donation stream for the Rod Harquail Fund, a registered charity created to help local children needing medical care. 

The hockey community and the public supported the tournament and the charity, and it is truly heartwarming to know the tournament has donated more than $150,000 to the Rod Harquail Fund. 
In turn, the Fund has given more than $105,000 to aid local families. All during a time of economic hardship for so many local people and businesses. The Rod Harquail Memorial became a true Canadian success story.

The tournament could not be held in 2020, 2021, and 2022. As preparations for a return in 2023 started, Rod’s parents contacted the team, saying they felt it was a time-for-change. Covid and health issues had them tired, and the thought of the tournament was no longer one of anticipation. You see, they just can’t stay away when people are volunteering for Rod.

So they made a selfless decision and suggested re-dedicating the tournament to someone better known to current players, volunteers, and fans could be good for the community.

After talking with the families, the Rod Harquail Memorial 3vs3 Hockey Tournament (2001-2019) will be re-dedicated as the Yves Meunier-Pelletier Classic 3v3 Hockey Tournament. 

Yves was a soon-to-be first-time father who left a large extended family and many friends at the time of his accidental passing in December 2020. He was a firefighter and had competed in firefighter skill and fitness challenges. Yves skated with the Youngtimers over the years, was a member of the Dalhousie Marauders, and has played in the tournament.

So, the name change is the Youngtimer’s way of saying thank you to all of the Harquails for all of their time and efforts over twenty years, just a favour for old friends.

Both the Harquail and Pelletier families have been dedicated supporters of Dalhousie minor hockey and the hockey community at large for many decades. With this in mind, the Yves Pelletier Classic and Youngtimers Hockey Team will continue donations to the Rod Harquail Fund in memory of our lost friends.