Fans celebrate at St. Louis Blues Stanley Cup Championship parade
Each St. Louis Blues player and coach gets his special, personal day with the Stanley Cup.
I’ve watched the videos and seen the photos. Cereal, toasted ravioli and pasta have been eaten from the Stanley Cup. Beer, champagne, margaritas, water and God-knows-what-else has been drank from the cup.
Friends, family, former coaches and community leaders. Grandma. Grandpa. Mom. Dad. Wives, sons, daughters. On boats and land. Parades and parties. Hometown ice rinks. Community centers. Main streets. Sporting events.
I can’t get enough of this Summer of Champions.
I don’t want it to end.
Imagine you get a call from Blues Owner Tom Stillman who says, “Thanks for your five decades of unwavering support and loyalty. As a reward, you have been chosen randomly to host the Stanley Cup for one day and night.”
Ponder: If you got your day with the Stanley Cup, what would be on your agenda?
Here is this fan’s Stanley Cup Day:
- Transportation. We are renting the largest vehicle rentable. Driver included. Ideally, the truck or bus has a balcony or bed on back that we can stand on and hold high the Stanley Cup for public view.
- Food. Sorry. We are not eating out of the Stanley Cup itself. Too many people to meet and places to visit. That is reserved for the players. We’re packing a few bologna sandwiches and chips. Eat on the go.
- Drinks. Sure, we are. You must be legal age. You must not be driving. You must not be afraid of germs and don’t mind drinking from a huge cup after your friends or family. It’s a self-reporting system on colds, flu, mouth sores. You can drink last.
Stops, visits along the way.
I will let someone smarter than I figure out the schedule and logistics. It makes my head hurt a little.
- Veterans homes, hospitals. We are stopping at the local veterans’ homes, hospitals, shelters and organizations in the Metro East. Thanks for your service.
- Police department and fire department stations. We may not hit them all but we will hit all we can. Thanks for your protection and public service.
- Mt. Carmel Cemetery, Belleville. That’s where my parents and grandparents rest. And generations of other family and friends. As well as many late St. Louis Blues fans who passed without knowing the fun and satisfaction of our home team winning the Stanley Cup.
- The old Arena site off Interstate 64/40, St. Louis. It’s fancy office buildings, restaurants and retail outlets now. You’d never know it was once the site of the Arena/Checkerdome unless you were there once. We’ll stop by and find an empty parking lot. A toast to the Plagers, Berenson, Bowman, Unger, Wickenheiser, Federko and Sutter. To the Old Barn. If you were there, you will never forget the Blues-Blackhawks battles on Saturday nights.
- The old Schmiezing’s bar-restaurant. Located on Hampton Avenue near the Old Arena site. It was the meeting place before and after Blues games, before the Enterprise Center. Great chicken wings.
- My old schools. The Blues players have shown us a great example. Don’t forget your roots. We’d make a stop at Sister Thea Bowman Grade School in East St. Louis which is the same building as my old St. Philip’s Grade School. Althoff Catholic High. Maybe a drive-through at SIU-Edwardsville.
- Jackie Joyner Kersee Foundation Center, East St. Louis. Let the local youths enjoy the brief moment with the Cup. The JJK Center is near Jones Park. A lot of fond, childhood sports memories there.
- The Belleville Fountain. The Cup could use a good rinsing and photo session in the historic fountain.
- Lindenwood football stadium. To me, it will always be Township Stadium. The best place ever to watch and play a high school football game. I don’t know future plans for the old football stadium. Let’s give it some community life again, for a few hours anyway.
- Work family. Definitely have to take care of the good people I spend 40-plus hours weekly. The people who had to listen to me talk Blues’ hockey non-stop during the playoffs. We’d have a little gathering in the parking lot. Wear blue. Cake!
- Family and hockey friends. We’d spend the last few hours of our special day in a quiet setting, gathered around the Stanley Cup before it has to be returned. Clean and polish it. The guys I texted back and forth during playoff games. You know who you are. Guys like me who are still comprehending that, yes, we really won the cup, in our lifetimes.