From November 9th to 11th, the WRC was overflowing with enthusiastic hockey players, coaches and family members as Westmount hosted the annual Sal Grasso Friendship Tournament, a long-standing hockey exchange in partnership with the Cape Ann Youth Hockey Association in Massachusetts.
From the opening ceremony Friday afternoon – complete with national anthems and flag bearers – to Sunday’s farewells, friendship did indeed prevail on the rinks and off, as 24 hockey teams played their favourite game, cheered on their colleagues, and shared meals. The sportsmanship carried over to the WRC’s popular foosball table, resulting in an impromptu off-rink tournament. Various other social events took place over the weekend, including a Saturday evening gathering for Peewee teams at the home of one of the Westmount players.
Although the coaches’ hockey game went to Cape Ann, Westmount was the overall winner of the 2018 tournament, earning the right to display the trophy at the WRC until its teams visit Gloucester, Mass. next fall.
Our city’s collaboration with Cape Ann began in 1987 when CAYH coach Sal Grasso paid for a bus to give his young players the experience of traveling to play hockey games in Montreal. Following his death in 2006, the tournament was re-named in his honour.
Congratulations to the very dedicated team at the City’s Sports & Recreation for organizing a fun and flawless event. A special thanks to staff members Andrew Maislin, Michelle Dodds, Jennifer Heaps, Matthew Lawton, Jessie Zhou, Claude Danis, Bruce Stacey, Dave Lapointe and others for their months of planning, not to mention their many hours at the WRC looking after every last detail and creating an unforgettable experience for the hockey community.