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'It’s cool to close the streets and bring hundreds of teams': Hockey Fest takes over downtown London, Ont.

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Ball hockey players of all ages have converged in downtown London this weekend for the annual Hockey Fest.

“It’s cool to be able to close the streets and bring hundreds of teams to London downtown,” said Mariah Kaymyriah, event director of Hockey Fest.

The event, based out of London, travels all over North America will run through Sunday.

With music playing at each rink on Dufferin Avenue, Wellington Street and in Victoria Park, and with food trucks on site, the event is was called the “Lollapalooza of street hockey” by Barstool Sports.

“We’re the defending champs, 7-0 last year, so we came to run it back,” said 17-year old Carson Thompson.

He added, “What’s not to enjoy about playing hockey on the roads, and now that our season is done, it’s great to get out. We are a bunch of grinders from double-A, single-A and MD.”

Carson Thompson (far left) rallies his team as they get ready for the second half of their game at Hockey Fest in London, Ont. on May 11, 2024. (Brent Lale/CTV News London)Teams came from all over southwestern Ontario, including the Brantford Badgers who entered nearly a dozen teams in all age groups.

“We do tournaments all during the summer and in the springtime and this is our first one on our calendar,” said Markus Mathurin of Brantford. “We love coming here, and it’s my favorite tournament because the atmosphere and the vibe is pretty insane.”

Some of the proceeds from the event will go to charity.

“We’ll do a donation to different charities everywhere we go, and we partner with different hospital organizations where they host it, and they host it and make as much money as they can for any charity they are working with,” said Kaymyriah. 

More than 100 teams have taken over downtown London, Ont. for the annual Hockey Fest tournament on May 11, 2024. (Source: Brent Lale/CTV London)

More than 100 teams have taken over downtown London, Ont. for the annual Hockey Fest tournament on May 11, 2024. (Source: Brent Lale/CTV London)

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