Story and images by Erich Eichhorn (ISN)
September 21, 2015 Colwood, BC (ISN) – Hundreds of hockey fans, some standing in line since 7 am at the Q-Centre in Colwood were treated to a red carpet meet and great as players from both the NHL San Jose Sharks and the Vancouver Canucks descended on the Westshore community to kick off the 2015 Kraft Hockeyville day. Fans young and older lined the walk way with hopes of an autograph and maybe even a photo op as teams arrived to begin their morning skate in preparation for tonights preseason game.
The Q-Centre was dressed and ready to receive fans and NHL players Monday for the morning skate ahead of the night’s preseason NHL game – Erich Eichhorn image (www.allsportmedia.ca)
Hockey fans were no less entertained outside by the teams mascots Sharkie (San Jose Sharks ) and Fin ( Vancouver Canucks ) as the were inside as players from both teams took turns with game preparations. Fans were lined up to Westshore Recreation center hoping to catch a glimpse of the NHL stars as they exited thier respective buses.
A young San Jose Shark fan gets what he came for. Never to be washed again – Erich Eichhorn image (www.allsportmedia.ca)
There was no shortage of Canucks wear as fans packed the sidewalk to see their favorite players step off the bus – Erich Eichhorn image (www.allsportmedia.ca)
Kraft Hockeyville, a grassroots and community hockey event, supports local rinks and community centres together with the NHL, NHLPA, Sportsnet, and Kraft to connect family and friends through their passion for hockey.
With a successful nomination of North Saanich’s Panorama Recreaton Centre,initiated by volunteer and hockey dad Jason Fletcher , Kraft Hockeyville provided North Saanich, the ninth winner of the annual Kraft Hockeyville event, with a donation of $100,000 for arena upgrades, as well as an NHL preseason game.
A city and an island thankful for Jason Fletcher’s hard work and initiative, and thankful for Kraft Hockeyville – Erich Eichhorn image (www.allsportmedia.ca)
For the Vancouver Canucks, it is their second trip to Hockeyville, their last being in 2009 when they visited Terrace, BC. For the Sharks, this will be their first involvement with the event since it inception in 2006.
Organizer Jason Fletcher gets arousing applause and cheer from the fans as he is introduced in front of the video camera – Erich Eichhorn image (www.allsportmedia.ca)
Teams will play a preason game against each other tonight with a puck drop at 7:30 pm in a game that many in the area are sure to talk about for some time.
For those who were unable to attend todays festivites, have a look through the lens of ISN photographer Erich Eichhorn and some more images from this morning.
Canucks mascot FIN has some fun with a young fan at the morning skate – Erich Eichhorn image (www.allsportmedia.ca)