Eurolanche is the first European fan club of Colorado Avalanche which was established on August 12, 2007. Its founder and director David Púchovský had planned to establish some group of fans from “Old Continent” long time ago. European fans have always had more difficult situation compared with American fans and therefore the mutual help was an ideal solution. Eurolanche in the beginning was just a simple web page. Its aim was to unite fans and exchange contacts, ideas and information. After some time it was obvious that they would deserve better services and help. In March 2008, with financial help of few members, Eurolanche started as a professional web with independent domain.
New web – just a detail for a stranger – gave Eurolanche new face and fresh power. Eurolanche became a precedent, something unique, something that was missing on the hockey market. Members could write articles about Colorado Avalanche in mother tongue, engage in competitions, buy souvenirs in e-shop and many others. The most important feature of the web should be organization and meetings of members. Already few weeks later in summer 2008 we organized a meeting with Peter Budaj. It was just a small step in our modern history that we would like to repeat every year with participation of various players. This tradition was confirmed one year later when we met with Paul Stastny.
The Road to Denver
Idea of organization trips for fans to Denver was born in the head of current director few months before the fan club was established. Eurolanche have further supported this idea and make it come true. Two trips with attendance of 6 Eurolanche members were organized in January and February 2009. Free tickets given by club management as well as VIP access to every player was the biggest advantage. 2008/09, our second season in history of Eurolanche and the first with professional webpage was concluded by mutual meeting of members in Martin, Slovakia. Nobody was thinking about such a success achieved in such short time.
The third season
The 2009/10 season turned out to be essential for Eurolanche. Besides successful organization of the third Eurolanche Invasion with participation of record-breaking six members, the new website was finally launched after countless postponements. It offered many new benefits, including a broad range of interactive features. These achievements have lead to a greater responsibility and new goals.
Turnaround and changes
The 4th season of Eurolanche fan club wasn`t successful for Colorado Avalanche either, franchise recorded the worst season ending result in its history. It seemed like bad efforts of players did have similar affect on running of the fan club. Thanks to losses, many members lost their attention to the game as a fans and therefore the new website started to stagnate. No longer it had been fullfiling its function of interactivity and thanks to that it has become a sort of a mess. These reasons lead us to an important decision.
At the end of unsuccessful 2010/2011 season (for both club and fan club) - we decided after just one year to change the website structure once again. Since now, it should be a news source for the most part, which means it will not be focused on fan club`s activities anymore. Amongst its positives surely is a quickness of information processing and simplicity. As the first step, we focused on implementing historic and current statistics, which we are planning to extend as the time goes. A big plus is also actualized lineup after every match ending.
A period between 2010 and 2011 was very tough for both parties. Alongside stagnation and fall of franchise`s name on the market, we were unsuccessful to make a trip back to Colorado, for the first time in our history. Luckily we were able to organise a meeting of fan club`s members in Slovakia.
The success of new era
The first season with the re-designed website has become the most successful in the Eurolanche history. The decision to create new concept of the www.eurolanche.com focused on more news was definitely right. The daily unique number of visitors has raised up significantly. More and more fans joined Eurolanche and some of them have started to write their own stories in different languages.
New era in Eurolanche brought also the fourth trip of members to Denver. Three members had a chance to visit another series of the Avalanche home games. Meetings with players and the support of the team organization were available again. Not only the Invasion IV had the high quality coverage but also the coverage of the Avs news was on the high level. Dozens of stories were published weekly at the website.
The successful season also included several contests for the hockey memorabilia and also unforgettable moments during the Avalanche games. There has not been a reason why fans from all around the world should not join the Eurolanche. The year was ended by the meeting of members from four countries organized in Slovakia; in Bratislava for the first time.
The lockout and shortened season
Eurolanche´s editors have successfully started the exclusive coverage thanks to the interviews with the former and current players of the Colorado Avalanche before the start of the season 2012/13. The interviews included for example Ian Laperriere, Gabriel Landeskog, Semyon Varlamov or Ryan O´Reilly. The Eurolanche´s website has reached the credit and was sourced or quoted by several mainstream websites, as are The Hockey News, NBC Sports, Yahoo Sports or Denver Post. Sum up, in spite of the no NHL hockey for few months, the Eurolanche enjoyed the most successful part in that time.
When the NHL season had finally started, four members from Slovakia and Czech Republic organized the fifth trip to Denver, Colorado, so called Eurolanche Invasion V.