A reduced budget was one of the topics of discussion at the Dryden GM Ice Dogs General Membership Meeting back on July 6, 2021.
A 15 per cent reduction to the Ice Dogs yearly budget has been caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Loss of revenue was also a factor due to a six-game season last year with minimal fans due to restrictions allowed and a shortened season the year before.
“We are reliant on people paying for a seat to watch our games and when that number of games is so drastically decreased, you're facing budget constraints you have to adapt to, we just found ways where we could slash expenses from our budget and raise money in different ways,” said Dryden GM Ice Dogs President Mike Sveinson
“This game and the experience of being an ice dog or being involved in teams looked and felt as close to normal as it always has, but we had an opportunity to not overspend, knowing that we would have a very hard time recouping those expenses through our usual revenue streams,” added Sveinson
The Ice Dogs are a community team and sponsorship is a big part of that, according to Sveinson, the sponsors have been fantastic throughout the pandemic.
“People understood the struggle and people understood how valuable their sponsorship was last year, more so than any other year that they've ever been involved with the team. We're looking for that again this year as we transition back into a way more normal business model,” noted Sveinson
The promise of a full 56 game schedule is high due to COVID-19 restrictions easing and mass vaccination distribution across Ontario.
This year, for the Ice Dogs home opener, they plan to host a Vaccinators Night to thank the hardworking health care workers from the region.