The residents of Edison Park were not only treated with a beautiful summer day on Saturday, but they got spend their morning with the Holy Grail of sports trophies, the Stanley Cup. Just like in 2010, John McDonough used his day with the Cup to thank those who made it possible, by having a rally with a couple of thousand friends and neighbors at Brooks Park. The Blackhawks worked with the Edison Park Chamber of Commerce and local politicians to make the event possible. I arrived at the park at 10 am, for the 11:30 rally, and there were already a couple hundred fans decked out in their red and black attire. When the rally kicked off there had to be well over 2,000 fans in attendance.
I was lucky enough to get a private viewing of the Cup and no matter how many times I've seen it I am always in awe of the history that comes with it. You can't help but think of the mythical legends of the game who have held that very trophy in their hands. Names like Gretzky, Hull, Mikita, Howe, Roy, Richard and Lemuiex come to mind. Whenever I see get a chance to touch the Stanley Cup I also think of those great players who worked their whole lives to get that moment and never got the chance. Guys like Wendell Clark, Cam Neely, Jeremy Roenick, Mike Gartner, Mats Sudin, Michel Goulet and Pat LaFontaine just to name a few. To be in the same room as Stanley Cup gives me chills and a real sense of appreciation.
The rally was a great success. Gene Honda was kind enough to be the master of ceremonies and gave the crowd a big thrill by introducing Jim Cornelison to sing the Star Spangled Banner. After all honored guests spoke, which included state senators and the principals of John's grade school and high school, it was time for the local boy done good to have his moment. McDonough was very gracious and appreciative of all the support the Blackhawks have been receiving. He is a humble man who has never forgotten his roots and those who have helped him along the way. One thing that stuck in mind was his message to all the kids; "Don't be afraid to dream big because it just might come true."
I've attached some very amateur footage I shot of the National Anthem and John McDonough's speech. Hope you enjoy.