CORNWALL, Ontario - An eleventh hour attempt by the River Kings to raise funds and attract investors fell short Tuesday night. That same evening, the team announced that they would be closing their operations.
"Unfortunately, attempts to secure last-minute investors who came out of the woodwork to help save the Cornwall River Kings have been unsuccessful," The River Kings', Steve Moreau said in a statement. "Each one backed out when they were told there was no revenue from concession or beer sales, no discount on ice time and only 30% of marketing in the arena. It also became pretty obvious rather quickly that the City was ready to move on, having removed our logo from the ice at the Ed Lumley Arena less than 12 hours after announcing the team would not participate in the 2016-17 Season."
The River Kings attempted to gather 1, 000 people outside of the Civic Complex Tuesday night to crowdfund the team.
The Kings hoped to get $500 from each person in attendance to finance their operations.
In the end, 200 people showed up. One of those people in attendance who did offer $500 to help the team was Cornwall City Councillor Mark MacDonald.
"To me the City was there," said MacDonald. "I think what it comes down to is fan support."
When asked why he chose to financially support the team's eleventh hour push he said, "I'm somewhat of a River Kings fan. I've been to a few games. If they wanted to bring out 1, 000 people and raise $500 from each I was willing to be one of them."
In Moreau's statement, he said that a lack of financial incentives made the team difficult to market to investors.
"We pushed and pushed hard to find one last company or private partner to invest in the team. Unfortunately, they all backed out when they realized the only revenue would be ticket sales and sponsorship," Moreau's statement concluded. "I wish we had better news today for our passionate fans, but unfortunately I do not. First and foremost, my family and I were River Kings fans, and this is a sad day for all of us."