Madeleine Shaw visiting WinSport Canada for G Day Calgary 2016 event

G Day Calgary: Game On!

IMG_2415It’s official: G Day Calgary, taking place at WinSport at Canada Olympic Park on Sunday June 12, 2016 is GAME ON.

“Game on” is not an accidental choice of words in this case: as I discovered on a recent trip there, C-town is one sporty place indeed. On the very Friday morning that I walked through WinSport’s doors, I was struck by the abundance of pony tail-sporting hockey players in the world-class winter sports facility: why weren’t they in school?

“It’s Wickfest. Hayley Wickenheiser is here today teaching a girls’ hockey clinic,” my guide helpfully informed me. Sure enough there she was, down on the ice with a gang of them: I almost fell over. I am not going to get all fake-misty and tell that I am some major closet hockey fan: I’m not, at least by Canadian standards. Of course she is a world class legend on that front, however in my eyes she stands tallest as a leader, someone who put women’s hockey on the global map, an ambassador and champion of gender equality in hockey, sport overall add basically everything else.

IMG_2410I snapped a few photos of her working with the kids and considered going outside to turn some cartwheels in the dazzling sunshine, secure in the knowledge that this was as clear a sign as any that the next G Day had found its home. To be polite, however, I went to check out the rooms. They were great! On the way back into the main hallway, there she was again, helmet-free and with a minimal entourage. My guide asked if I would like to be introduced. “If I can remember how to speak English in time!” I replied.

I briefly told her about G Day, grabbed a photo and she headed back to building the next generation of hockey stars.

Will she be at G Day? You may well be wondering. Speaking of stars, let’s make a wish, shall we? We’ll keep you posted 😉 In the meantime, tell your Albertan pals to save the date, watch for a ticket sale announcement early in the New Year, and see you in Calgary in June!!

Madeleine Shaw with Hayley Wickenheiser, Calgary 2015

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