As a passionate fan of hockey – I’ve always wanted to visit the Original 6 cities – Montreal, Toronto, Detroit, Chicago, New York and Boston. To date I have only visited Detroit. Last week I had the opportunity to travel with The Sharks to Toronto and Montreal. It was an amazing experience. So much to share but I’ll stick to the highlights.
We were staying at the same hotels and got to see first hand some of what the players go through in every city. Fans waiting in front of the hotels for autographs and photos with different Sharks players. Then they get to the arena and the media is in full force watching morning skate and then the interviews with players and coaches fully takes over. I’m not talking about 5 or 6 reporters. More like 20-30 reporters with their rapid fire questions of what’s right and wrong with the team.
Let’s get to the some of the fan fun:
Toronto – Hockey Hall Of Fame is an ABSOLUTE must if you’re a hockey fan. It was a religious experience and at times overwhelming to see and read the history of the hockey world.
The same evening we got to experience The Sharks and Maple Leafs game at The Air Canada Centre. It was fun to be in an intense hockey environment. Expectations run high and the fans will remind the team how badly they’re playing at any given moment.
On Friday we flew out to Montreal. We walked all over Old Montreal where it was FREEZING cold (32 degrees to be exact) with a nice breeze to make it a little more interesting. What an amazing city to visit – So much to do, see and EAT! Make sure to check out Gibbys Restaurant if you want an evening of fun dining.
Saturday was game day. We went to morning skate and walked into the Bell Centre and was just blown away by all the retired player numbers and Stanley Cup banners hanging in the rafters. If that wasn’t enough, I spotted this glass case full of miniature Stanley Cups (24 of them to be exact). The exact number of cups they’ve one in their history. Pretty awesome!
Finally it was Saturday night and it was Hockey Night In Canada. One of the most popular shows on television was airing all over the great white north. We were lucky enough to be inside the Bell Centre. I felt like I was walking into church. The energy and the passion of the fans was at a fever pitch.
On our portion of the trip the team won a game and lost the other. While we were a little bummed out with the loss, we made a lot of friends at the game and around the city.
I would strongly suggest a trip to both cities and if you need a tour guide – I know a DJ who can show you around!
Thanks for reading my blabber!