Charities score in Esso Classic

DAN TOTH -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 12:32 PM ET

The Boston Bruins Alumni team skated off with the trophy, but Calgary charities and puck-starved fans were the winners in yesterday's Esso 3-on-3 Pond Hockey Classic. The ninth annual event raised more than $115,000 for local organizations involved with hockey at the community level.

This year's haul boosted the event's total to more than $1 million overall since the first puck dropped in 1997.

"We're always happy to raise between $110,000 and $150,000, so this was another great year," said event co-chairman Colin Patterson.

"The weather co-operated this year too, which always helps with the crowds that turn out.

"We also didn't have any last-minute cancellations (by players)."

This year's beneficiaries were local participating minor hockey teams, KidSport and the NHL Alumni.

The event attracted 11,000 fans to the venerable Stampede Corral for the morning and afternoon sessions combined.

More than 6,000 took in the final, watching the Bruins edge the defending two-time champion Vancouver Canucks Alumni 2-1.

The Bruins squad was comprised of Bob Beers, Joe Mullen, Bob Sweeney, Tim Sweeney, Gord Hynes, Ken Linseman and goaltender Blaine Lacher.

Many fans took advantage of the events by grabbing autographs from the 56 retired hockey stars on hand representing eight NHL teams, including the Flames.

The event was highlighted by a dinner and auction Friday night that included dozens of items of unique NHL memorabilia.

A seat from the old Montreal Forum autographed by several former Flames was the star attraction, going for $3,800.

A framed Bobby Orr-autographed hockey stick was also auctioned off for $2,300.


Videos

Photos