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My Take on Snow Lake - Jan. 15, 2016

Annual Boxing Day hockey game marks 50th year
2015 snow lake boxing day hockey game
(BACK-L): Sadie Stabback, Devon Teneycke, Jessie Stabback, Davy-Boy Smith, Mike Korchinski, Ted Stabback, Zach Berube, Derek Chrapun, Davy Roberts, Denis Chrapun, Dustin Lamontagne, Jason Young, David Bishop, Jonathon Young, Lance Chartrand, Glen Young, Terry Hornyak, and Tawney Eastman. (FRONT-L): Tanner Korchinski, Richard Gartley, Skylar Plante, Justin Francis, Mitchell Ried, Alex Francis, Tyler McMechan, Emile (Chart) Chartrand, Kyle McLaughlin, Rick Stabback, Riley Eastman, Nick Norlock, and Jordan Crone.

The annual Boxing Day game was once again the “go-to” event on the 26th of the last month of 2015, at the old Wilfred T. Lipton! This was not only because folks back for Christmas felt the need to get their feet moving and burn off a little of mom’s baking, but it was the 50th anniversary of the first game played, way back in 1965!

With 28 players taking part in the game, there was ample opportunity for rest between shifts ... and unlike other sparsely attended years, there were actually shifts! Added to the 28 players taking part, Sadie Stabback and Tawny Eastman ran lines and from high on his perch above the player’s boxes, Terry Hornyak called the play. They weren’t too busy; this was actually a pretty clean crew. Don’t get me wrong, there was the obligatory hacking, slashing, and such … they were just a little more subtle about it.

The scoring wasn’t quite as high as it was in other years; 9-8 for the white team after three periods. However, everyone was feeling so good after three, they decided to play a fourth. Smart move for the black team, but a decision that could have used a little more thought by the white crew … the score at the end of the fourth stanza was 14-10 for the black!

This year was a bit of a family affair and it saw two generations of several families strapping on the blades and going head to head. There was Emile (Chart) Chartrand who did his best to try to score on his boy Lance. Mike Korchinski faced off against son Tanner on several occasions. Glen Young had two sons on the ice; Jason who was occasionally on his line and Jonathon who played defense for the opposition. Also, in addition to having daughter Sadie whistle him down on the occasional offside, Ted Stabback partnered up with son Jessie and against his youngest boy Rick. Rounding things out; Alex Francis played against son Justin, Derek Chrapun lined up against father Denis, and Riley Eastman was called on the odd play by older and much wiser sister Tawny. If this game ever sees three generations on the ice at the same time … we’ll really have something to celebrate.

Out in the rotunda and in the stands, there was a good mixture of family, friends, and some who just wanted to watch hockey. It was the most people I’ve personally seen in the rink since last year’s squirts tournament. Hey, it is always great to see the rink in use and packed to boot, and with the recent resurrection of minor hockey … it looks like a trend.

After the game had ended, there was time for photos on ice and a beverage or two in the dressing room … when all was said and done; it was a fine way to put a local stamp on 50 years of hockey fun between family and friends.

In other news … Doug Elniski – vice-president of human resources for Forbes Brothers Powerline Construction – made an appearance at the Town of Snow Lake’s regular council meeting at 6:30 p.m. on Jan. 5. Elniski entered the meeting at 6:45 p.m. and began his presentation shortly thereafter. Within it, he noted that Forbes Bros. Powerline Construction was the successful bidder on two of the first four Bipole projects, including the one in the Snow Lake area. Mr. Elniski gave a recap of the Forbes Bros company history, including the purchase of Interlake Power Line Contractors Ltd. While working on the line, the company’s employees will be staying at a contracted 49-person camp located off of Provincial Road #596 into Wekusko Siding. Elniski noted that preliminary foundation work has started for the Bipole project, but because of the lack of frost, the project is running behind schedule. The town provided Mr. Elniski with a list of available businesses in the municipality for distribution and thanked him for attending and meeting council.