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Winter Classic at Wrigley Field

4 January 2009 No Comment

The NHL may have given sports fans everywhere a new New Year’s Day tradition: the Winter Classic.  In its second year, Chicago fans were in a euphoric state about the Winter Classic at Wrigley Field on the first day of 2009.  What can be more blissful than bringing two classic hockey teams- The Hawks and Red Wings- to the nations most nostalgic stadium- Wrigley Field?  
After watching the NHL assemble the ice rink piece-by-piece through the opening in left field, I was more than happy to call it an early night on New Year’s Eve for the possibility of waking up early on New Year’s Day for breakfast, Bloody Mary’s and a game of Corn Hole in January.  There is something awesome about the novelty of importing a summer tradition for one day in winter, just to celebrate another sport played at Wrigley Field.
Since Andrew was fortunate enough to get a ticket to the game through our friend Mike, I relied on Andrew to get me a single to get into the game.  In a weird twist of fate that I believe can be summed up as good ‘fan karma,’ I found myself with a $75 ticket a few rows from the third base line with a perfect, up-close view of the rink.  (Andrew has a more detailed account of how he got the ticket but again, to me, it is just good sports fan karma).  This vantage point gave me the euphoric high of watching my Hawks in my favorite park as though I was at a high school hockey game….ah, the bliss, the sweet bliss.  

Now, not to be elitist, but here is my recommendation to the NHL:  
You have a great thing in the Winter Classic.  Leave it just for the Original Six and keep it a New Year’s Day tradition. Sorry, but I’m a traditionalist.  Fans are actually excited about hockey again, and there is something about outdoor hockey that takes the players and the fans back to simple…hockey on a pond. 

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