Sockeye salmon from Bristol Bay is taking to the ice at Seattle’s Climate Pledge Arena in a partnership with the National Hockey League’s newest team, the Seattle Kraken.

Bristol Bay Native Corp., which represents 31 tribes comprising 10,000 members, also will operate a Bristol Bay Wild Market in collaboration with the fishermen-funded and -operated Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association and Bristol Wild Seafood Co.

BBNC purchased Blue North Fisheries and Clipper Seafoods in 2019, making that new company the largest longline Pacific cod operation in the U.S.

The three organizations have come together to bring “exceptional wild Alaskan seafood and the people and rich cultural heritage of Bristol Bay to millions of arena visitors every year,” the groups said in a press release.

During every game and event held at the arena, an Alaska seafood menu will feature wild Alaska panko cod and sockeye tacos, fish n' chips, sockeye fillet and baguette and chowders.

Bristol Bay also will be splashed across hundreds of TV screens inside the arena, the LED side rings, on the main scoreboards and more.

The marketing move follows the lead of Oregon-based Pacific Seafood, the first seafood supplier to land a sports partnership last fall with a multiyear deal with the Pac-12 Men’s basketball and football teams which includes a dozen West Coast universities. It added Pac-12 Women’s basketball earlier this year.

Back on the ice rink, the Kraken team and coaching staff also will hold annual hockey camps in Alaska for kids who wouldn’t normally have exposure to the game.

Laine Welch is an independent Kodiak, Alaska-based fisheries journalist. Click here to send her an email.

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