Norwich hockey enthusiasts enjoy sixth annual jamboree

members of NU'80
After reliving their glory days, members of the Class of 1980 gathered for a group photo. Pictured (L-R) Matt Daly, Greg McManus, Paul Radzik, John Collins and Tom Downey.

Norwich hockey enthusiasts and their families gathered at the Pilgrim Skating Arena in Hingham, Ma., on June 13 for the 6th Annual Norwich Hockey Jamboree, hosted by the Blue Line Club. Nearly 70 alumni and friends of Norwich laced up their skates and created four teams and two leagues … the "NHL" for the young and aggressive (or those who still think they are young and aggressive) and the "Scrub" League for everyone else. Actually, it was a bit hard for the casual spectator to distinguish the two leagues based on the level of action. As for the game scores, well, that's a different measure.

While Norwich hockey legends relived old times skating with former teammates, open ice was available for their children. Some of these youngsters were just learning to skate, while others are destined to be future All Americans for Norwich (we hope). Men's hockey coaches Mike McShane and Steve Mattson '77 were present in non-recruiting roles. The mission of the day was to have fun, enjoy Norwich camaraderie, and to raise funds for enhancements to the interior of the Kreitzberg Hockey Arena. The mission was accomplished in grand fashion.

photo in front of Pilgrim Arena
Pausing for a photo in front of the Pilgrim Ice Arena in Hingham, Mass., are Eugene Curley '51 and his four children, Matt, Jill, Tom and Cindy; Jill's children, Dominic and Ana; and Mike McShane. Gene has taken the lead as chair of the 2005 Hockey Jamboree.

Outside, a huge tent was pitched with tables and chairs. Underneath, Dave Maxwell, Kreitzberg Arena Operations Director, and Jason Springer '00, Major Gift Officer, were turning hotdogs and flipping hamburgers on the grill. A delicious lunch was topped off by a variety of ice cream novelties enjoyed by young and old alike. Guy Huntley '60 made the rounds with tickets for raffle prizes and a 50-50 drawing. A silent auction attracted many bidders. A live Jimmy Buffet impersonator entertained the families and guests. Christine Gauvin '98 captured the occasion on film as the event photographer. A special thanks to Jack O'Donoghue '83 for being the "go to" guy for this year's event. Gene Curley '51 agreed to become the chair of this event for next year.

The Norwich Hockey Blue Line Club recognized the following people who have passed away over the last year. These great people had an impact on Norwich and Norwich hockey: Matt O'Keefe '63, player 1960-63; Bill Cahill '73, player 1970-70 and head coach 1992-95; Elinor R Curley, hockey wife and mother; and Paul Stephenson, hockey brother.

The Jamboree could not have been the success that it was without the great sponsorships, alumni and family participation, the organizing committee, and the Blue Line Club. A hat trick to all! Thank you!

by Bill Passalacqua
June 2004

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