Andrew Milne is the owner operator of Pinnacle Hockey Inc. and has been involved in hockey in some capacity for over 20 years – as a player, assistant coach, head coach and management. He graduated from University of Alberta in 2005 with a Bachelor of Physical Education degree, with a major in Sports Management, and holds an Advanced Level 1 certificate from the National Coaching Certification Program.
Milne is currently the head coach and general manager of the Alberta Junior Hockey Leagues Canmore Eagles, and has held that role since the start of the 2008-09 season. Andrew served as an assistant coach with Hockey Canada West at the 2011 and 2010 World Junior A Challenge, winning a gold medal in 2011. Prior to joining the Eagles, Milne spent four seasons as an assistant coach with the WHL’s Kamloops Blazers and Swift Current Broncos, as well as three seasons with the AJHL’s Spruce Grove Saints. Milne also served as assistant coach for Team Pacific at the 2010 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge.
How do the experiences you offer at Pinnacle Hockey give participants a unique perspective on the history, people or culture of your region?
Hockey has such a deep rooted tradition in Canadian Culture, we break down the barriers and open up the dressing room as well as the player and coaches and take a good look and explain the hockey culture, which is something never done before.
How have the experiences that you offer evolved since their inception?
We are continually working things out to give our participants the best experience available. Taking feedback and listening to what it is people want to see and experience.
What is one detail of an experience you provide that may go unnoticed by participants, but which you feel is important?
The idea of accessing a junior hockey clubs dressing Room, the dressing room is such a big part of the hockey culture that so many people never get to experience. It is riddled with superstitions and traditions that have been created over time. Access to the room won’t go unnoticed but may not be appreciated until some explaining is done.
What do you wish every guest knew as they consider participating in the experiences you offer?
The experience is not that physically demanding or scary, putting skates on and giving it a go is a thrill and nothing to be afraid of.
What is one travel trend that really excites you?
With winter Olympics being held in Asian countries the exposure to hockey should be huge and I believe people will become fascinated with the sport and want to experience it themselves.
What sets Pinnacle Hockey apart from other, similar, hockey experiences?
To my knowledge there is nowhere else in the world doing what we do and opening up our facilities to the public.
What is one insiders tip to getting the most out of an experiential travel vacation?
Go with an open mind into everything you do and try new things.
What is one strategy that has helped your business to grow?
Allow people to have the experience of traditions and culture without actually stepping onto the ice. People can experience all the things that hockey has to offer, the sights, smells and sounds without actually going onto the ice.
What is one personal habit that has helped you to be successful?
I don’t know if it’s a habit but the fact the we have a Former NHL player as one of our owners allows for up close and personal contact with the best of the best in the game.
Please share one instance where a guest had a moving or emotional reaction to the experience you provided to them.
We have had a number of participants that tried our experience and were able to go back home and seek out hockey on a recreations level. Having loved the sport and now finding a greater confidence.