Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Doug Miller on 08/25/11 at 05:15 PM ET
I’m extremely excited to announce the news that I’ll be covering the 2011 edition of HockeyFest, down at the Joe Louis Arena in Detroit on September 10th. This is due to the fact that George will be up in Traverse City at the time to cover the Wings’ prospect tournament, as well as main training camp to follow.
First of all, I’d like to take the time to give my tremendous thanks to Paul, who asked me to cover this event in George’s absence. Honestly, it is a huge personal honor for me to be given an opportunity such as this. I also have to thank Paul for taking the time to get me the proper media credentials for this event as well.
Secondly, I would like to thank everyone that has donated any amount to George to help fund his 15-day trip up to Traverse City. As well as those of you who plan to donate in the upcoming weeks, for without your support, George’s trip wouldn’t be possible, and I would not have the opportunity to be coving HockeyFest this year. I even managed to scrape a bit of money together myself to help George out, despite the fact that I have very little to spare at this time, due to financial situations that are beyond my control at the moment.
Anyway, as had been requested of me, I hadn’t been planning to make this announcement for about another week or so. However, yesterday in George’s afternoon update on his outstanding blog, The Malik Report, he let this news slip out in a very minor way. Although, in my opinion, it was more so his news to break than it was mine. So I figured I’d go ahead and just make my official announcement today, as I had teased this news to my small group of Twitter followers, which has grown quite a bit in my first month or so here at KK. As well as my FaceBook (bleh) and Google+ (yay) peeps, who also got a little teaser about this news early last week, once everything had been officially confirmed by all parties involved.
There will be a lot of things going on at HockeyFest this year… including player autograph sessions, a Red Wings locker room tour, hockey-themed interactive fun zones, which are essentially simplified versions of various hockey-skills competitions, which will feature the occasional appearance of Wings players as well, either to play alongside fans, give them tips, and may even challenge them to a match. In addition, there will be multiple Q&A sessions on the main stage, to be setup on the covered ice, which will feature players, alumni, and staff members of the Wings organization. Plus photo opportunities with the 2008 Stanley Cup Banner, the Red Wings Zamboni, Al the Octopus, the Wings locker room, and more. Finally, there will also be Red Wings memorabilia exhibits, a live DJ, and additional contests and prizes.
It really is a once-in-lifetime kind of opportunity for most Red Wings fans. As I mentioned before, HockeyFest 2011 will take place on Saturday, September 10, and runs from 11AM - 6PM. Ticket prices are as follows: $25 for adults, $15 for kids (12 and under), as well as a special “Gold Ticket” option for the die-hard fans with deep pockets, as those come in at a cost of $500 each, but include several special benefits.
I urge any and all Wings fans who are in the area to attend if you can find a way to do so, as this is already shaping up to be a spectacular event. Plus, I think $25 is a very good price considering all of the events that will be going on at the Joe that day. Although I know that many of you Wings fans are out of state (or out of country) and will not be able to attend, which is where I come in.
I’ll be doing my best to attempt to cover every single aspect of HockeyFest as is humanly possible, in order to bring the experience to those of you who will be unable to attend. I haven’t quite finalized all of my exact plans for that day of coverage, but expect it to be rather extensive, and hopefully, updated throughout the day here on Cluster Pucks. Expect to hear more about the details of that as HockeyFest draws closer, as I’ll be providing a full preview of this event, with all the details of the various events and activities going on that day, as well as giving you a better idea of what my full-coverage that day will consist of.
Also, in some recent HockeyFest news, that George has already covered in his blog, but I figured I’d include it here as well, since it directly relates to the event itself. Yesterday, the Red Wings issued a press release of the preliminary list of current players scheduled to be in attendance, as well as what time they will be present at HockeyFest. Although, it should also be noted that it has already been announced that each player will only be scheduled for approximately 1-2 hour sessions of autograph signings, which will be conducted in a bit of a “treasure hunt” fashion, as it will not be announced where exactly these players will be at, nor exactly what times they will be available for their autograph sessions, outside of their announced scheduled time of appearance, adding to some of the fun and excitement that comes along with an event such as this.
As per the official HockeyFest 2011 press release:
Detroit, MI… The 2011 edition of Red Wings HockeyFest, co-presented by 97.1 The Ticket and Fox Sports Detroit, is set to take place at Joe Louis Arena on Saturday, September 10 (11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.), providing citizens of Hockeytown with an unforgettable day of fun, family-friendly activities as well as the chance to meet some of their favorite players. A preliminary list of Red Wings set to attend this much-anticipated event can be found below alongside their designated appearance times. Additional current players as well as members of the Red Wings Alumni Association will be added to this list at a later time.
RED WINGS 2011 HOCKEYFEST LINEUP (Preliminary List)
Justin Abdelkader (11:30am – 2:30pm)
Todd Bertuzzi (11:30am – 2:30pm)
Daniel Cleary (2:30pm – 5:30pm)
Ty Conklin (11:30am – 2:30pm)
Patrick Eaves (11:30am – 2:30pm)
Jonathan Ericsson (2:30pm – 5:30pm)
Tomas Holmstrom (11:30am – 2:30pm)
Jimmy Howard (2:30pm – 5:30pm)
Jakub Kindl (2:30pm – 5:30pm)
Nicklas Lidstrom (11:30am – 2:30pm)
Drew Miller (11:30am – 2:30pm)
Henrik Zetterberg (2:30pm – 5:30pm)
To help organize that preliminary list into more of a time-based grouping for an easier understanding of who will be around at what time, I’ve broken that list up by time of appearance. Keep in mind that this isn’t their autograph session times, as that will be only about half of the time listed (which will remain unknown), as the other time will be spent either involved in the Q&A sessions or interactive hockey-skills events.
From 11:30AM to 2:30PM
From 2:30PM to 5:30PM
Of course, as with any event like this, player appearances and times are subject to change without notice. More players will be announced as they are scheduled, which is why this is just a “preliminary list”. I’ll be bringing you any further news on this as I get it, with the reminder that I’ll have preview of a full run-down of what to expect posted up a few days before HockeyFest, when all the player, alumni, and staff lists have been somewhat finalized.
That does it for now. If you’d like to get all of the little details about the various events going on, as well as some general guidelines as well as questions you might have. You can visit the Official Red Wings HockeyFest 2011 Webpage.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
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