The Stanley Cup!
Posing with a mask worn by Jacques Plante
Last week we had the pleasure of meeting up with friends and taking both our families to the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto! I had not been to the HHOF in years, and my children had never visited. With five kids under 11 between the two families, I was a bit concerned that we would struggle to keep them all entertained for the full visit.
I could have saved myself the ordeal of worrying at all, since both adults and children were able to find lots to pique their interest, and even better, we were able to make connections to so many of the displays and our own lives!
It was a Friday afternoon when we ventured down to 30 Yonge Street. My kids’ interest was captivated immediately as we were able to check out the goalie mask display right beside the entrance. My oldest son was especially interested to see the mask of Jacques Plante, especially since he had just written his first ever speech on the Canadian innovator, the first goalie to ever wear a mask in professional hockey.
Next, we headed to the Great Hall, where we were able to get our pictures taken with the Stanley Cup! This was a real thrill since even at their young age, my children are already totally riveted by the Stanley Cup Playoffs and still dream of hoisting the cup some day. Then we headed to check out artifacts from International Hockey competition, where as adults we could reminisce about great rivalries and competitions we had seen in our lifetime. And of course, one of the big attractions for my kids (and admittedly for me) was to view the “Golden Goal” display. All Canadians were connected through that amazing victory, and it brought back memories of “where were you when”. I was in my basement, watching with my family, one of my favourite hockey memories ever.
From there we headed to view the Memorial Cup, and just beside it, the International Silverstick display. For my family this display held significant meaning since my younger son’s team had WON the International Silverstick this year. Each year a plaque containing each division champions is displayed with the original Silverstick. We got to take pictures of my son next to the display where his team was featured on the plaque (the PeeWee team from our Centre was also listed as they were also International Silverstick Champions this year!)
Grinning ear-to-ear after seeing his team’s name on the International Silverstick Champion’s plaque!
As we rounded the corner from that display, my kids squealed in glee as we entered the interactive portion of the HHOF. We had visited on a Friday afternoon so the lines were almost non-existent, and my kids got to take turns again and again at the shooting accuracy drill, and then tried their hand as goalies. This was definitely a highlight for them. Then, up the stairs to the TSN Broadcasting booths, where each child (and the adults) took turns recording play-by-play calls to significant sporting broadcasts (this was my four year old’s favourite part of the HHOF!).
Finally, we headed into the change room to try on goalie pads, look at equipment, and my four year old even tested out Toe Blake’s suit (not sure she was supposed to, but what are you going to do? She was having fun.)
Big Ol’ Goalie Pads!
Of course, we ended our trip in the souvenir shop where each child took home a little something to remember the HHOF.
I’ve touched on some of the major stops along our HHOF tour, but there were many displays I haven’t mentioned. My main thoughts when we left the HHOF was how easy it was to take my family through, and how many displays there were to events, games, and players that had touched our lives. If you are hockey fans, I highly recommend the trip.
In case you are interested, you still have a chance to win one of five family passes to the HHOF. Canadian Hockey Moms is pleased to announce that the Hockey Hall of Fame will be offering up Five (5) Family Packs to lucky recipients, each Family pack includes:
Five Hockey Hall of Fame passes
One voucher for a complimentary photo package with The Stanley Cup
Value of each pack – $98
CLICK HERE to enter a giveaway for one of five Family Packs!
Even if you don’t win, Canadian Hockey Moms can save 20% off Hockey Hall of Fame Admission when you purchase your tickets online. PLUS, you will also receive 50% off your photo package with The Stanley Cup! Click here and enter promo code CHM.
So, be sure to consider a visit, it is a really great time!
***Special thanks to Jackie Schwartz of the HHOF for taking time to show us some of the great features of the HHOF! Much appreciated!