After a week in the United States, The Keeper of the Cup went north to Canada where people live, eat, and breathe hockey. The week saw players and staff alike continue the Capitals Summer Of Celebration as they shared the Stanley Cup among themselves. There were special family moments, moments of giving and caring, community sharing, and of course there were parties!!
Madison Bowey began the player’s tour on Saturday 28 July with his proud parents and extended family. He even loaded up on some of his grandmother’s borscht before meeting the excited fans. Bowey, who learned to play hockey in Manitoba, Winnipeg set the Cup up at the Varsity View Community Centre Sportsplex. He played with the Varsity View Falcons as a lad. He also visited the Children’s Hospital in Winnipeg, bringing smiles to young and old alike. He didn’t stop smiling the whole time!
There was a quick stop in Regina, Saskatchewan for Assistant General Manager Ross Mahoney and Darrell Baumgartner, one of the Capitals scouts, to share their day with the glimmering cup. The two are old friends from their days of coaching together in Saskatchewan.
On a bright morning in Saskatchewan, Braden Holtby met up with his folks at their farm before following the Cup to Lashburn and the CN Sportsplex where his dad took him to learn about hockey. It was a momentous day for the Holtby family and all their friends in the community. More about his day can be found in our article about Holtby, Home and Family.
The next stop was in Southern Ontario with video coach, and sometime stand-in goalie, Brett “Stretch” Leonhardt. He posed for a picture in front of the Mitchell town sign which pays tribute to hockey legend Howie Morenz. Morenz played for the Montreal Canadiens and is considered one of the first stars of hockey. Leonhardt’s wife Logan shared some of the great moments of the day, including a special margarita filled cup drank by Brett’s grandpa. Stretch drove around New Hamburg Thursday, stopping in the rink where he learned to play in the crease. He did some fund raising for the minor hockey team in town through a lottery for a signed Alex Ovechkin jersey!
— Logan Leonhardt (@JLoganLeonhardt) August 4, 2018
Next up was equipment coach Brock Myers in beautiful Chesley on 3 August. About 500 fans came out for their turn with the Stanley Cup at the Chesley Community Center. Mark Cowan of Blackstone Sports donated a new skate sharpener in honor of the day. Lines formed early but they all seemed to have made it through for photos. Did we mention there was ice cream in the cup???
The following day the Keeper of the Cup met goaltender coach Scott Murray in his hometown of St. Clements in Waterloo where Scott took the cup for a ride Clem-Style, visited the local butcher, and hung out with friends in the community. Stemler Meats provided a pig roast for the evening celebration and loaded up the cup with pepperette meat sticks to share.
Tom Wilson welcomed Lord Stanley home to Toronto. After some time at home with family and close friends, it was off to where he and his brothers first played hockey at the North Toronto Hockey Arena. His event helped to raise fund for the SickKids Foundation and he set aside some special time for one young man. After the visit to the rink, he and girlfriend Taylor Pischke hosted a robust party at home. Even teammate Devante Smith-Pelly was there, perhaps to sneak the big shiny guy out early for his day!!
Devante Smith-Pelly waited until Monday for his day at home in Scaroboroguh Ontario. Ok, we think he may have just snagged the cup from Tom’s party to take with him!! DSP spent time a the SickKids Hospital in Toronto before meeting up with fans patiently waiting in the pouring rain at the Black Dog Pub. They all powered through, as Devante is known to do and had a special day that brightened all their cold and wet spirits.
It was a great time in Canada and now the Shiny Dude crosses the ocean back to Europe. First stop Denmark!