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Although expected, it finally became official yesterday. The following is from today's Herald.


Official word came Monday that the hockey arenas in Grand Forks and Thief River Falls named after the late Ralph Engelstad will get the 2005 World Junior Hockey Championship.

The International Ice Hockey Federation announced it at its general congress in Marbella, Spain, on Monday, according to officials of the Engelstad Arena at UND. The 10-nation tournament begins in December 2004, and is expected to bring as many as 15,000 players, family and fans to Grand Forks.

It was good, if expected, news for Engelstad Arena. The tournament had been promised months ago after a visit to Grand Forks and Thief River Falls by IIHF officials.

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And on a related topic, the GF City Council voted for the deal with Canad Inns. The article in the Herald states, "The first phase is to build an 11-story luxury or near-luxury hotel attached to the north entrance that would feature a restaurant and gaming facilities by December 2004, in time for the World Junior Hockey Championship. Another 11-story tower would be built in a second phase." That's good news for the tournament.

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