Joe Louis Skate

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    On Thursday, September 20th, I stumbled upon a link on Facebook for open skating sessions at Joe Louis Arena (the NHL owners have to do something to try and keep their fans while they continue to lock out the players). I sent a quick email to Tara, and she was able to secure some tickets for us to go (the tickets were free, but space was limited). She ended up with enough tickets that we were able to take along our friend Jeff and his son Andrew, who plays hockey with Drew. We also took Carson, another hockey teammate and the son of Tara's friend Deanna.

    We arrived at the arena with about 10 minutes to spare before our time on the ice got underway. We signed our waivers and moved to the "locker room" area (folding chairs were set up for us along the boards where bleachers would be during an actual game) to put on our ice skates. While Tyler, Samantha, and Jayden were all interested in joining us (mainly to avoid school for the day, I am sure), you had to be able to bring your own skates with you in order to participate, and they don't have any. For our family, it was just Drew and I on the ice, while Tara stayed off so that she could take pictures of us all having fun.

    We skated for a little less than an hour (it was 50 minutes, I believe). While it had been quite some time since I had done any skating, I managed to stay upright the whole time. I saw Drew on the ice a time or two, but I think that was mainly intentional. After skating we changed back into our shoes and headed upstairs to the concourse. We took a few pictures with some of the legends statues, and the kids played some of the games that were set up (including a shot-target game that Drew did very well at) and some table hockey type games. We then headed off to the concession stands, where everything that they were selling - hot dogs, large popcorn, nachos, pizza, 32oz. pop, etc. - was going for just a buck a piece, tax included! Needless to say we were able to get a meal for cheap, so we opted to "dine in" at the arena instead of stopping on our way home. Ironically enough, as we were deciding what to eat, Tara noticed that an old family friend was sitting at one of the tables. John C., who used to work for the Detroit Pistons and is now holds the same position with the Detroit Red Wings, was there. I said hello and talked to him for a moment (I didn't want to bother him too much - he was eating his lunch, after all) before heading off to pick up pop and pizza for Drew and I.

    After eating we headed out of the arena. Instead of heading straight home we stopped off at my work so that I could be dropped off to start my day. Unfortunately. That was the only drawback to a great morning!

Open Skate

Drew skating on the ice with Andrew following behind.

Carson skating across the rink.

Another shot of Drew on the ice.

Drew and Andrew skating near a face-off circle.

Drew out in front as he and Carson race down the ice.

Drew and Rodney making their way towards the bench area.

Another shot of Drew and Rod.

A look up at the retired Red Wings numbers hanging in the rafters.

A look at more of the banners in the rafters of Joe Louis Arena.

Rodney skating around the rink.

Carson, Drew, and Andrew on the Hockeytown logo.

A close-up of Carson, Drew, and Andrew.

Rodney and Drew on the Hockeytown logo.

Andrew and Jeff skating together.

Drew once again.

Carson and Drew playing tag on the ice at "the Joe."

A look at Andrew and Jeff posing for a photo.

Drew and Carson racing once again.

Drew in the announcer space between the two benches.

Drew sitting on the Red Wings bench.

Please click here for page two of the photos


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