Gabe Karlik is looking forward to the next hockey tournament he streams live in Rankin Inlet – big time!
Karlik was on-hand to work the sound board for the grand opening of the new arena last Saturday, Nov. 23, in Rankin.
He and James Sandy, along with play-by-play announcer David Ningeongan, have been sending local hockey tournaments into the homes of Rankin Inlet for the past few years and their broadcasts have been a big hit in the community, especially among shut-ins and those who don’t get around as easily as they once did.
Karlik said he can’t wait for the new PA system to be installed in the arena and the Polar Bear Plate junior-juvenile hockey tournament to roll around.
He said he expects the crowds to hear a big difference inside the arena once the new system is installed.
“I’m expecting the difference between our old arena and the new one to be 10-times fold, and the audience will really be able to hear the improvements,” said Karlik.
“It’s going to be a (major) improvement to the sound and people will no longer have to worry about crowd noise and hearing the announcer clearly.
“And we’re going to see those improvements across the board with the new arena.
“There should be no more kids heard crying because they’re cold and want to go home, and parents will be able to watch a whole practice or an entire game without freezing to do so.”
Karlik said the new arena will make live streaming the games a heck of a lot easier for he and Sandy.
He said they’re still looking at a few possible upgrades to the system they’ll be using, and he’s confident those upgrades will become reality now.
“People watching the games at home during the next tournament we broadcast should notice a big improvement in the camera work.
“We’ll be using better cameras that will allow us to follow the action better and do things like zoom-in and zoom-out from face-offs.
“The atmosphere at the grand opening was exciting and people were able to put the long wait for this facility behind them, I think.
“There were a lot of people who were beginning to think this day was never going to come because our new arena was pushed back, pushed back and pushed back some more.”
Karlik said he expects the atmosphere during big tournaments will be similar to the old arena, only better.
In fact, he said, he expects the energy levels to be high in the new arena during the bantam tryouts for the Arctic Winter Games this coming weekend.
“Everyone gets pretty pumped-up on their own when it comes to hockey in this community.
“But, that being said, the new arena really does represent the dawning of a new hockey era for Rankin Inlet, and the fact turf will be put down after hockey season to make it a real year-round facility makes things even better for the community, especially amongst our youth.”