Saturday, September 24, 2011

A Great Day for Hockey!

Today, Daniel made his big hockey debut in a large venue - Consol Energy Center!  OK, so he really only got to play a 2 minute scrimmage during the 1st intermission at the Penguins pre-season game against the Minnesota Wild, but still!!!  We were excited!  And, Daniel?  Well, he was beyond excited!  It was like...Christmas!!

We arrived early (as instructed).  Although we had to drive around the block and ask a security guy to find it, we parked in the South Lot across from the Trib Total Media gate (as instructed).  What can I say?  In my normal neurotic fashion, I printed our 3 pages of instructions and had them in my purse!  It was all very STRESSFUL! 

Eric laughed at me last night because, in the carefully laid out directions and pages of instructions, we were informed that only one parent was allowed to accompany the players to the locker room to get them in their gear and get them on and off the ice.  I read Eric the attachment from the Penguins (to make sure that he read it all) and then I asked him, "now, do YOU want to go down with him?  Or, would you rather I go down with him, because...." but before I could launch into all the important details that I felt certain he missed when I read him the instructions (while he ignored me and played a computer game), he said, "Lori, I will if you want me to, but really, why don't you just do it?  You know that if you're in control of it all, you'll feel a lot better and won't stress out nearly as much."  He made a good point.   So, Daniel and I gathered with the rest of the team in the lobby and awaited our VIP lanyards.

Daniel - ready to go!

So happy to get to play with his buddy, Luke!

Luke, Daniel & Ryan - teammates in SHAHA

We had to be there really early to check Daniel's gear with the Penguins' staff.

Daniel and Luke, excitedly awaiting their chance to play down on that ice!

Killing some time in Kids' Zone

Still waiting and killing time!

Finally, they get to head down to the locker room!

Checking out their sticks!

Getting their equipment

Almost ready - time for faces?

Now they're getting serious!!

Daniel & Luke ready to play...against each other!! :-(

More detailed instructions from the Penguins' staff

Figuring out teams

Daniel wearing white

Daniel leading his white team out to the ice

Warming up a little
Listening as their names are announced

Daniel is ready!

Daniel shoots....

Great shot, Daniel....but Luke stopped it!

Daniel shoots again....

Another great shot,....but Luke stops it again!

Awww.  Was that 2 minutes already?!

Time to go up in the stands with the rest of 18,000 cheering fans (mostly kids!), watch some Penguins' hockey, and oh yea...get on TV!!
Final score:  Pens - 4, Wild - 1

Such a fun game.  Such a great day for Daniel.  He and his friends really had an awesome time.  So thankful for his coaches, the friends he's made, and the Penguins giving all those youth hockey leagues free tickets.