Former Leaf Clark headlines Dinner
The 16th Annual Hockey Celebrity Dinner highlighted by Wendel Clark appearance
Story courtesy of acadiau.ca 20/06/2013 10:52 pm
WOLFVILLE, N.S. – For the 16th consecutive year, the Axemen Hockey Celebrity Dinner, presented by local barristers BoyneClarke, drew the attention of the Annapolis Valley sport community with this year’s headliner NHL great and former Toronto Maple Leafs’ captain Wendel Clark.
With just over 500 in attendance, Clark grabbed the attention of an appreciative crowd from his stories of past glory with the Toronto Maple Leafs to his opinion on today’s game and the recent banning of checking in minor hockey leagues across Canada. In a Question and Answer session with TSN Correspondent and emcee Paul Hollingsworth, Clark spoke about the tough guys of the past NHL and how much the game has changed over the last decade with more physical play.
The evening was also highlighted by the announcement by Acadia’s Director of Athletics, Kevin Dickie, that the late Connie MacNeil’s No. 6 jersey will be retired in the coming opening weekend of the regular season in mid-October.
Dickie, who started the Celebrity Dinner while head coach of the hockey Axemen 16 years ago, acknowledged how the event has grown. Dickie pointed out that the event began as a fundraising brainstorming session with several Blue Line Club members including Tom Prescott and the late Connie MacNeil and grew to the showcase event it is today.
The Atlantic Midget Champion Valley Wildcats were in attendance and honoured by organizers of the Dinner. Also former Acadia assistant coach Jim Midgley, who spent the last two seasons with the Memorial Cup Champions Halifax Mooseheads as an assistant coach, was on hand for a Q and A sit-down with Hollingsworth.
The event, chaired by Len Hawley, has raised over $320,000 in its 16 year history and has attracted some of the top hockey personalities including Jean Beliveau, Gordie Howe and Bryan Trottier to name a few. Support of the Silent Auction alone raised over $15,000 this year plus table sales.
A special thank you to the event’s major sponsors including Aqua Valley, Tripcentral, EastLink, Labatts, WestJet and Pepsi.