Three months have passed since the kids lifted that glorious trophy over their heads and we still can't believe what an amazing opportunity your organization has given 15 boys and their families. It is difficult to put into words the emotions that went down that first week of July. But we do know it was an accumulation of events that started a year before. When we think about our Brick experience there are almost two ways of looking at it. One through the eyes of the family and one through the Eyes of the player.
Hockey is an expensive sport as we all know and traveling to Edmonton to compete for a North American Championship is even more costly. However big thanks to the Toronto Bulldogs and your efforts to fundraise to make this tournament economically feasible. This is something truly unique that you should be proud of. You are giving back to the hockey community. The day of the Golf Tournament was awesome. We think that was the starting point when all the kids realized what a special time in their lives it was. They were announced into the hall with the lights dimmed and their Jerseys hanging above the head table. So many friends, and family supported the boys at that golf tournament, auction and dinner.
The special moments that Brendan recalls include: Air Canada Centre dressing room and meeting Gordie Howe BBQ/Pool party Coaches taking the kids mini putting at the mall and to the movies Mascot skating/dancing to 'who let the dogs out'
All the boys of course thought of Lilly as Mrs. Clause. Every time Lilly saw them they were getting a new team shirt, golf shirt, hoodie, shorts. What a wardrobe! The best dressed kids in Edmonton. When we arrived in Edmonton others knew how special the Toronto Bulldogs were- there was a feeling of respect . We met people who lived in Edmonton and who come every year to cheer the Toronto Bulldogs because they know the players are skilled.
The Coaching staff did an awesome job on creating a team and they pushed the boys to do their best and to play as a team. Most importantly the boys were treated with respect and as a parent that made us feel so comfortable. The Tournament was a unique hockey environment. The naysayers will say it is a little bit better than spring, but it wasn't even close. The caliber of hockey was so elite and your organization was true class. It was a special time to be a ten year old hockey player. Go Bulldogs!
Sincerely, The Bowie's
2001 Toronto Bulldogs Brick Champs!!
The Brick Experience was everything is was made out to be. The Parents, the kids and the bulldogs organization were first class. Winning the championship wasn't easy, all the kids bought into the program and all the parents did too. Each kid had attributes that led to a great team and led to the championship. There were 3,000 fans watching the finals at the mall, our kids felt like professional players and helped in their maturity as young Adults. The tournament has made my son work harder to achieve his goals, but most importantly has made new friends with his teammates forever and they will always have a special bond as brick champs. I would recommend the experience to any child or parent if you have the opportunity to go to the Brick Tournament. It is well worth the experience and are grateful that there is an organization like the Bulldogs who made this a reality for our kids.
Thanks again for everything Michael Ciccolini Parent – 2011 Toronto Bulldogs – Brick Champs!!!!!
Congratulations to all the boys for their hard work, determination and team work to make the 2011 Brick Invitational such a success!
What an experience both my son Mason and I had. We met so many great families from other cities and will have friendships for life. I would strongly encourage anyone who is thinking of being apart of it, to do so.
I played 14 seasons in the N.H.L. and have never been so nervous before a game, like I was for our boys in that final game. We stayed at Fantasyland Hotel in the West Edmonton Mall where all the tournament games were played. It was great being able to get up in the morning and go down to the rink and watch games all day if you wanted to, and great hockey it was for 9 and 10 year olds!
I would like to thank Lilly and Ralph Lamacchia for running such a professional organization and bringing our families into their home and making the kids feel like they were family.
I would also like to thank Coach Lucky, Coach Vince, Coach Massimo and Coach Jim for their time and dedication to helping the kids understand team concept and hard work!
I will never forget the summer of 2011 and the smile it brought to my sons face! Memories Forever!!!!