Jalin, Sierra, and Preston earned a very special experience at a recent Minnesota Wild game. Jalin was the winner of the John Foley Excellence in Servant Leadership award and the others were the Hockey in the Hood Cup winners for Academic Excellence. As a reward Brad Bombardir, Director of Community Partnerships and former player for the Minnesota Wild, rewarde the winners with a special Behind the Scenes tour of the Xcel Energy Center before a Wild home game. A very special Thanks to Brad and all the special people at the Minnesota Wild that make us feel so important. The experience was amazing! The kids were grateful and learned a lot.
Below are some of the highlights from our trip.
Preston and Sierra pet a Bhrama Bull in the lobby before the game. The Bull was there to advertise for an upcoming Rodeo. It was an unexpected way to begin our journey.
Brad took us down to ice level through the players' entrance. We saw the Zamboni Machines up close. It really is fascinating how they work.
We met the game officials. These guys travel . . . A LOT! After that we watched warm-ups from the ice level (Picture at top).
Brad took us up to the Press Box where we met Tom Reid, former North Star and WCCO Radio Play by Play announcer. We also got to go on the FOX Stage and say the "Let's Play Hockey Cheer" with Brad.
Next we went to the control room. This is where everything from the scoreboard to the horn to the cameras are controlled. It was really mind blowing how much stuff happens during a game. The kids learned a lot in here. The began to understand that "Hockey Player" is not the only sports career.
We got to watch the team take the ice from right outside the locker room. One of the players said to Brad, "I'm going to go CHEESEY." Later we asked Brad what he meant. Brad explained that "Cheese" is a French Canadian slang term for shooting the puck in the upper part of the net. Finally we got to watch the game. We were shouting "CHEESE" every time the Wild got a chance to shoot. The Wild won 5-2. Most of all it was a win for three kids who have worked hard to serve others and do well in school!