Thank you to our Germans and Edmonton
By Nation Dan8 months ago
Edmonton, I love you and I am so honoured to be able to show you off to the world, one group at a time.
The story started back in 2018 when I was lucky enough to head over to Germany and Sweden as the Oilers made their way to Europe to play an exhibition game against the Cologne Sharks, and then a regular season kick-off against the New Jersey Devils in Gothenburg, Sweden. At the time, a group of Oilers fans scattered around Germany and surrounding countries had started a Facebook group for Oilers fans. They were planning to have their first face-to-face meeting of the group in Koln to coincide with the game. When they learned of my trip, they sought me out and our friendship began over our mutual love of the Oilers.
In March 2020, the group came together once again and we were able to bring 26 Oilers fans to Edmonton. We all remember what happened next. The final game they were supposed to attend on the trip was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In an incredibly confusing and challenging time, we enjoyed the extra time as best we could and pledged to reunite again down the line. As we said goodbye, there was an uncertain feeling of when we would be able to connect again. That was March 13th, 2020.
Fast forward to March 13th, 2023 and many of those same Oilers fans got back on a plane and touched down on Edmonton soil once more. Some of the faces were the same, some were new, but what ensued was an incredible trip with cherished memories made to last a lifetime. Below, I just wanted to showcase a few of those memories and pay tribute to an amazing group of fans that make their week stay so incredibly special for all of us. As you’ll see, this crew got a lot done in a very short time.
Inspiring a fellow countryman (Tim Stützle) to score two:
They met Leon Draisaitl:
Became friends with Devin Shore:
Connect with the Stelters and share the impact that Ben left on them from thousands of KMs away:
So, so many podcast appearances:
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Got their Donair fix:
Even more podcast appearances:
Running into Ryan McCleod:
We were also thrilled that the group was in town to help us make our 15th Birthday Party Extra Special. Even though they were only in town for 10 days, this special group of people made a huge impact not only on our staff but also on anyone they met. Even though it wasn’t an overly long time, our party-hardy German friends closed down the Pint most nights and their energy was intoxicating. No matter how you slice it, this was a whirlwind of a trip with so much to enjoy and celebrate and yet so much more to look forward to for next time.
I also wanted to thank so many amazing Edmontonians. You are the real reason we have so much fun showing this city off to groups from other countries. People like Gavin, Gina, Rogers Place security guards, Matrix Hotel staff, Gene Principe and so many others took time to interact with the group and make their stay in our city feel like a home away from home. It was truly remarkable to see the support and love that our German crew got from complete strangers, and I promise you that they will not forget the hospitality.
I can’t say thank you enough to “my” Germans: Niklas, Nils, Lars, Jesse, Sven, Philipp, Janusch, Thomas, Melina, Melanie, Christian, Tim, Julian, Andreas, Mario, Marc, Lucas, Alexander, Hans-Dieter, and “trip Grandpa’s”, Rudi and Frank. We are truly humbled that you joined us for a second tour of Edmonton. We hope you had the best time and we cannot wait to see you again!
Bis zum nächsten Mal.
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