Vernon residents are rallying after a theft rocked a hockey tournament.
At least eight raffle gift baskets were stolen from Civic Arena early Friday morning.
“It’s terrible. They’re stealing from kids,” said Janine Collard, co-ordinator of the Atom Development tournament, which starts Friday and runs until Sunday.
The baskets were going to be raffled off as a fundraiser for the local teams.
While upset over the theft, Collard is pleased with the public response since word about the incident has spread among residents.
“Everyone is filing in here with donations,” she said.
“Vernon is a small town and everyone is coming in with cash or basket items.”
Volunteers will be at Civic Friday morning if anyone wants to donate.
Considerable work had gone into collecting the items for the baskets.
“It’s the major source of funding for our teams. We could make up to $2,000 per team if the baskets are good and people want to bid on them,” said Collard.
The baskets were set up inside Civic at 6 p.m. Thursday and the alarm went off at 4:30 a.m. Friday.
“They are big baskets so there was definitely more than one person involved,” said Collard.
There was no sign of forced entry.
“Staff continue to investigate and are checking all entry points to try and determine how access was gained to the building,” said Doug Ross, recreation services director.
“Access was limited to an entry stairwell and the concession area.”