Headed to a game under the stars

On January 6, 2012, in Opinion, by Brian Mills

Photo taken this morning by Kyle Mace. 

Long underwear? check

Layers of clothes? check

Jersey? check

Handwarmers? check

You get the idea. This is pretty much the same list that I had when I went to the NHL Winter Classic last year. In the end, I didn’t even wear my coat. Most of you probably remember that mother nature didn’t exactly cooperate. It was warm and rainy. This year will be different. I will get my outdoor game experience. Don’t get me wrong. Last year was an amazing game, and I won’t forget that for the rest of my life. There was just something missing when the temperature was as warm as it was. Without a doubt, it will be different this year going to the AHL Outdoor Classic as the Bears take on the Phantoms. Surely I will be needing the long underwear, layers and hand warmers. I’m looking forward to it.

In my youth, I played hockey on ponds a couple times. I did not have the opportunity do play as much as many other people, but I do remember it fondly. The first time I ever put on a pair of ice skates I was probably in high school. I remember going to a friend’s house. They lived on a farm and had a pond on the property. I borrowed a pair of skates which happened to be figure skating skates. I took a couple tentative laps around the pond and then said, “Hand me a stick.” We played shinny for who knows how long. I do know that is the last time that I wore a pair of skates with a toe pick on them. I can’t tell you how many times I fell face first onto the ice, but it was a lot. A few year later the movie “The Cutting Edge” came out. If you’ve seen that movie you will remember the toe pick scene. I could completely understand. In case you have never seen the movie, here is the clip.

Outdoor games such as the one tonight have brought back memories for players and fans alike. Please share yours with us. I plan on enjoying this one with my girlfriend and daughter who are also very excited. So here’s to a great game tonight, a great experience for everyone and of course a Bears win!! Be sure to follow us on twitter (@sweetesthockey) for updates from the game.