Sask. premier cites August goal for fans to return to Mosaic Stadium

Saskatchewan’s Premier wants to see the province cheering on “North America’s greatest football team” in person when the season kicks off in August. 

Premier uncertain goal will be reached, but wants to see fans in stadium for CFL's proposed kickoff

Premier Scott Moe says he hopes to see fans gradually return to Mosaic Stadium in August, in time for the Canadian Football League to start the proposed season it wants. (Bryan Eneas/CBC)

Saskatchewan's premier wants to see the province cheering on "North America's greatest football team" in person when the season kicks off in August. 

Both Premier Scott Moe and Jeremy Harrison, the minister responsible for Tourism Saskatchewan, said as much as the most recent session of the legislature concluded on Friday. 

When questioned about tax implementation, Harrison touted — among other things — the government's work in creating a robust vaccination strategy which he said led to the creation of the provincial roadmap to reopening that would see the province return to normal including a "full Mosaic Stadium."

"I'm not certain that we will get it right full, but we most certainly do want people to get into Mosaic here this summer," Moe said after Friday's question period. 

"We'll achieve that in the same way that we're achieving our reopening plan here in Saskatchewan, and that is very similar to turning up the lights with a dimmer switch."

Moe said the province was looking into a plan that would see some fans return to the stadium in a limited capacity before essentially "turning up" the restricted capacity. 

Randy Ambrosie, commissioner of the Canadian Football League, announced in April that he intended to get the league back in action in 2021 and set a "target date" of Aug. 5 for the 14-game season. 

Ambrosie's April statement said two things need to happen before the season can start: approval from public health officials across the country and permission from governments to allow fans in stands. 

"We know [those fans] will come from far and wide, across western Canada and from North America, to cheer on what we believe is the greatest football team in North America," Moe said. 

The commissioner's statement said contingency plans were in place and the league was open to the idea of a flexible schedule that would see teams play in front of fans in either eastern or western Canada, when they're able to.