While in Montréal, I wanted to do something unforgettable – I wanted to meet to Montréal Canadiens! I figured out how to do so, and it was an amazing experience. Best of all, it doesn’t require a lot of planning either, IF you know who to call. Lucky for you, your gal is here to spill the beans on my little secret, and hopefully more fans can meet their favourite players behind the jerseys, just like I did!
Following breakfast on my first morning in Montréal, I headed out to a local shop and picked out a Montréal Canadiens jersey. I wanted a ‘real’ jersey, not just a printed t-shirt. There are many shops in Montréal with Habs merchandise, and I found a great official women’s jersey for less than $100. Score!
I had been given a tip-off on a phone number to call and learn when they will be there next. The number is a media hotline that informs local journalists of when the Canadiens will be practicing next. The number is (+1 514) 989-2835. When you call, there is an automated voice message that says something like:
“(Date) les canadiens s’entraînent à (horaire) au complexe sportif Bell de Brossard. (Date) the Canadiens practice at (time) at the Bell sports complex in Brossard.”
The recording will also say the practice times and locations for any opponents the day before a big game.
The Canadiens mostly practice at the Complexe Sportif Bell in Brossard, a borough south east of Montréal, just across the river. I took the very scenic bus ride from Station Bonaventure across the river to Brossard. The view across the river was worth the bus trip itself!
I arrived at the Complexe Sportif Bell with about 30 people and we were given quite the show! The players skated right up to the boards, and security was alright with us going right up to the boards too! Some players made trick shots and showed off their skills. The crowd just loved it! Every time someone scored a goal, they would get us to cheer and it soon became a contest of who got the loudest cheers. Definitely a lot of fun!
After practice, we waited outside the underground parking and some of the players came outside to sign autographs and chat with us. It was the coldest day of my trip to Montréal, and most of the players stayed warm in their cars, but the wait was totally worth it! A few of the players were in a bad mood and left in a hurry, but I was able to meet 10 Montréal Canadiens and I asked them to sign my new jersey.