Winter Blues Brings Spring Sports

With four months having gone by since my last article, I can proudly say I’ve lost 22 pounds through better diet and exercise. With news that gyms will be closing down for a month, let’s dust off the laptop.

The first couple of years that I worked for the Edmonton Rush Lacrosse Club, the team was underwhelming. When the Edmonton Prospects Baseball Club moved to Telus (now Re/Max Field) I helped out with some game recaps. That year the team was really, really underwhelming. Do you know what those experiences taught me to do?

They taught me to sell hope. Here’s hoping this inconveniently timed lock down and proposed vaccine do their parts in bringing us all back together in arenas and stadiums. More-so, here’s hoping this article get sports fans to recall the feeling and excitement of being at a live sports event.

The sports scene in Edmonton blossoms in the spring. The Rocky Mountain Lacrosse League (RMLL), Canadian Elite Basketball League (CEBL), Canadian Premier League (CPL) and Canadian Football League (CFL) all start their seasons. I have season tickets for the Edmonton Stingers, FC Edmonton and the Green and Gold.

Let’s talk about how freaking awesome it will be to welcome back the defending CEBL champion Edmonton Stingers to “The Hive” aka Edmonton Expo Centre. It was a cool experience being among the dozens of fans at 1st Round downtown watching the Championship Game earlier this year. It will be a cooler experience heading down to “insert your favourite pub” after a Stingers game to celebrate the victory this spring.

Sure maybe in 2021 you have to pre-book that post-game celebration. Maybe you have to limit the table to six celebrants. It is human nature to focus on the limitations but if you just watched your team live, and they won, a celebratory cold beverage and the new memories you just created are all you need!

FC Edmonton sank to the bottom of the “Island Games” and it cost a good man his job as Coach and General Manager of the Club. 2021 will see the Club’s new management and their Supporters Group known as the River Valley Vanguard (RVV) chomping at the bit to get the City talking.

I’ve come to realize that many an Edmontonian still finds the concept of a Supporters Group somewhat foreign.  Having watched decades of baseball games and football games before attending my first FC Edmonton game, I was one of those fans taken aback by the group. They were always either cheering or chirping or for the most part chanting. 

Quickly I learned to love the group. No matter your level of soccer fandom, the RVV are there to bring energy. With the amount of time we have all spent at home, we all have energy to burn. No fear, the chants are easy to pick up.

2019 Christmas

I gave up my EE season tickets a couple years ago because I cannot do Thursday games and it’s near impossible to sell tickets anywhere near cost for games against Eastern Division opponents. After having football literally taken away last summer, I’m ready to watch the Hamilton Ti-Cats and Ottawa Redblacks. Still cannot to Thursday games (work) but there is many a charity to slide those tickets over.

Will be interesting to see how the football club will handle the inevitable “go Eskimos go” chants. So much of the GameDay experience needs to get re-branded to coincide with the name change. The breath of fresh air drum line needs a new name. The dance team needs to re-jig a couple crowd interaction bits. Is the fight song really going to be a simple substitution of one name to another? Then of course there’s the matter of the actual game on the field. With 47 free agents, the football Club has just as much work to do internally as it does externally.

Oh to be in my seats in Section B to see and hear the end results of the longest off-season ever!

In what was a lost season, the St. Albert Miners retained the rights to host the Sr B Championships called the President’s Cup in 2021. The Beaumont Outlaws dominated the first decade of this century. The Miners dominated the recently finished decade. The Sr B Warriors are not just looking for participation badges. If the NLL is forced to move their season to overlap with the more than usual with Alberta Jr. A, how will Colorado Mammoth star and Jr A Miners Coach John Lintz be two places at once?

Here’s looking forward to having multiple sporting events in an evening and having to choose which arena or stadium I want to call home for the evening. 

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