01 Jun The Great One, Wayne Gretzky, Headlines Gala Dinner in Celebration of the 30th Anniversary of the Labatt’s Canada Cup in Hamilton
Carmen’s Group is proud to announce that Wayne Gretzky will share his memories on winning the 1987 Labatt’s Canada Cup at a gala dinner to be held at Carmen’s on Monday October 16, 2017 titled “An Evening with The Great One”. This intimate event experience celebrating the 30th anniversary of the Canada Cup victory will allow fans to get up-close and personal with the most iconic and decorated hockey star of all time.
The evening agenda will also pay tribute to the 45th anniversary of the 1972 Canada Russia Series with players from that team in attendance.
“It is an absolute thrill to bring an icon of Wayne Gretzky’s stature to Hamilton”, said PJ Mercanti, CEO of Carmen’s Group. “We believe that demand for this event will be spectacular, as Wayne grew up close by in Brantford but has had very limited personal appearances in the Greater Hamilton area over his playing career.”
“Wayne Gretzky is mentioned in the same breath as Michael Jordan and Joe Montana, celebrated athletes who dominated their respective sport for an entire generation so we know that Hamilton will be excited for this homecoming event.” Gretzky played twenty seasons in the NHL with the Edmonton Oilers, Los Angeles Kings, St. Louis Blues and New York Rangers, winning 4 Stanley Cups with the Oilers where he now serves as partner and vice chairman of Oilers Entertainment Group. At the time of his retirement in 1999, he held 61 NHL records: 40 regular season records, 15 playoff records, and six All-Star records.
Learning that the press conference was held at the former Copps Coliseum, now FirstOntario Centre, Wayne Gretzky said, “I understand you will all be on the exact spot where the goal was scored by Mario Lemieux to win the tournament, after a third consecutive playoff game ending 6-5 scores.” “It’s hard to believe that 30 years have gone by, but what a great idea to celebrate that win right where it happened in the Hammer.”
Dinner Co-Chair Dennis Concordia confirms that “this will be a unique experience to reminisce and hear directly from Wayne, and to remember that Hamilton played host to the championship round of the 1987 Canada Cup tournament, described as one of the best international hockey games ever played”. Concordia added, “I’m confident that many area hockey fans will also enjoy hearing stories about how Wayne honed his skills playing on the very same streets and ice rinks that thousands of area children still play on today.”
Net proceeds from the event will be directed to Minor Hockey in the City through the Canadian Tire “Jumpstart” program and will also support children’s nutrition through “Food4Kids”.
Lena Bassford, Executive Director of Food4Kids, is “thrilled to be a partner of what will be the event of 2017, in the year of Canada’s 150th birthday.” Bassford adds, “Food4Kids will be able to continue to facilitate programs in 105 schools in Hamilton and Halton that currently provides 1525 children with food in the Weekends without Hunger program and hand delivers food to 600 children through the summer months.”
Steve Maikawa, partner with Pro Hockey Life, is also proud that Jumpstart is aligned with this event as it will allow more children to be able to enroll in hockey programs across the city. “Jumpstart is more than just about getting kids active. It’s about giving kids from families in financial need the same chance to participate as their neighbours, their classmates and their friends. The vision of Jumpstart is simple: Canada, where all kids have a chance to fulfill their dreams.”
Previous “An Evening with” galas have featured international stars like Al Pacino, Sylvester Stallone, Sophia Loren, Olivia Newton-John, and Michael Douglas, raising money for local organizations including Good Shepherd, Canadian Diabetes Association, Hamilton Health Sciences Foundation and City Kidz.
Tickets to the event will be $200 and can be purchased online at carmensgroup.com/thegreatone or from the Carmen’s Box Office at 905 387 0007. VIP access is also available, granting ticket holders the opportunity to meet and take a picture with Wayne Gretzky. VIP tickets can be purchased for $999 single picture and $1499 for pictures with 2 guests. All tickets include a four course meal experience, live and silent auctions, and a moderated discussion with The Great One.