HOUGHTON — Pack the Dee and help Houghton be named Hockeyville USA. That’s what residents from throughout the area are being asked to do as part of the national contest put on by Kraft Foods.

Communities are competing for the title along with $150,000 for improvements to their rink and the privilege of hosting an NHL preseason hockey game.

“What we’re looking for is the community support of everybody,” Houghton downtown business development manager Susie Landers said. “It doesn’t matter; you don’t have to be a hockey player or involved in hockey in any way. This is just to show Kraft that this community is passionate about hockey.”

Pack the Dee is next Wednesday, March 11th, at 6:00 p.m. Everyone is invited to dress in hockey jerseys and take part in a huge photo. Following the photo, everyone will be treated to — what else — Kraft Macaroni & Cheese.

The city of Houghton has to submit an essay as part of their application but they need the public’s help, too. People are asked to nominate Houghton and Dee Stadium at krafthockeyville.com and write a small blurb showing your passion for hockey.

“It doesn’t have to be anything big,” Landers said. “It can be a sentence. It can be a few words. It can just be, ‘we breathe and eat hockey here’. Any little story; it doesn’t have to be about the Dee. It can be just about living in the community that is so passionate about hockey.”

People can submit three nominations per email address. Marquette and Calumet are also vying for the Hockeyville title, so you can nominate all three or nominate the same community three times.

If you nominate Houghton, be sure to select the Dee Stadium entry with the most likes, but do so before the deadline on March 18th. Kraft Foods will select which cities move on to the second round of the competition.