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New Sunshine Coast hockey tournament focuses on inclusivity

This Tournament Has Everything (TTHE) hit the ice on March 3 through 6 with four draft-style teams

In early March, 56 hockey players hit the ice in Sechelt to take part in This Tournament Has Everything (TTHE), a friendly competition that is the first of its kind on the Sunshine Coast. 

Four draft-style teams made up of players from the Coast, Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland, brought together people who identify as women, nonbinary or transgender. The players’ ages ranged from 19 to 60-plus years, and experience and skill level were also inclusive. 

Organizer Kao (Genevieve) Lawrie told Coast Reporter that they created the tournament after joining the Sunshine Coast Women’s Hockey League (SCWHL) two years ago. Lawrie, who identifies as trans nonbinary, had never played consistently on an adult hockey team. Playing hockey regularly as an adult with SCWHL and a Sunday night co-ed inspired Lawrie to start something new. 

“Sports are very binary and as a trans non-binary player, it’s tough to find room that feels safe on the bench. I spent my twenties and early thirties just doing late night mens drop-ins which meant changing alone in the dressing room and never really getting to know any players. Being able to experience the connection and inclusion of a team has been so inspiring,” Lawrie said. 

Over the course of March 3 through 6, the four teams faced off over a series of four games. Street cred was on the line, and Lawrie said the games were evenly matched even though the players weren’t asked to rank their abilities. 

“The arena was packed for every game with family and friends and fans," Lawrie said. 

"It was really emotional for me to look up at the crowd while playing because it was such a beautiful thing to witness so much community support for a dream that I had."

The event had faced some challenges. It was originally going to be held in November of last year, but the drought postponed the competition. Lawrie thanked the many volunteers who helped organize the tournament twice, as well as local sponsors including KER Enterprises, Gibsons Building Supplies and Sixgill Tattoos.

A dance party after the Saturday games featured DJ E-List and the Salt and Swine food cart. The proceeds from liquor sales — a total of $1,103 — is being donated to the Sunshine Coast Outreach program

 "It was important to me that TTHE Tournament was able to support such an incredible program. As a queer gender diverse youth, I used to go to a similar drop-in in my own community and it was critical for me to connect with other kids like me and be able to access resources and ask questions in a safe environment,” Lawrie said. 

“I decided to throw this type of a tournament because I wanted players who don't necessarily feel included in hockey to know that they have a place on the ice. TTHE [Sunshine Coast] Hockey Tournament was meant to promote and advocate diversity and inclusiveness in the sport,” they said, adding, “Hockey is for everyone.”  

Next, Lawrie is headed to Calgary and then Seattle to compete in similar inclusive tournaments. In Calgary, they will play in the Western Cup, North America’s longest-running LGBTQ+ multi-sport tournament. In June, Lawrie will take part in the Seattle Pride Classic

Lawrie is also planning the next local event, and has pre-booked the ice for the 2024 second annual This Tournament Has Everything hockey tournament. Anyone interested in participating is welcome to contact Lawrie at for more information.

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