Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Hockey Fest 2011: Breaking Down The Event Schedule

In less than two weeks the hockey doldrums of summer officially end as the Kings kick off the pre-season with their 3rd annual Hockey Fest!

More information is up on the Kings website about the event and if you've already purchased tickets, you may have received an email from the Kings with a more detailed schedule. If you didn't fear not because The Queen is here to help. Since the schedule times aren't listed on the Kings website, I thought I'd share the information.

I'm also providing The Queen's suggestions on what to see and what to skip during the event. One of the things you'll notice about the schedule is that events overlap, so it isn't possible to do every single thing listed. Hopefully some tips will help you pick and choose what you would enjoy most.

Updated Schedule of Events

8:30: Doors Open

9:00 - 11:00: "State of the Kings presented by The Fanz Choice" - Led by Dean Lombardi, pep rally to follow with players, staff and Ice Crew to be introduced

The Queen's Take: It's a must do, in part because nothing else in the schedule overlaps this but mostly because this is your chance to SEE you Kings, live in the flesh, for the first time in far too long! Oh, and Dean Lombardi's pithy comments and charts are always fun too. Bobby Scribe will be there taking copious notes and apply his decoder ring in a later blog.

Hey boys!

11:15 - 12:45: "Meet The New Kings presented by Rocco's Old School Products" - Mike Richards, Simon Gagne and Ethan Moreau
The Queen's Take: Required. These are the new boys, and we have a responsibility as Kings fans to make them feel welcome, We also need to find out more about what makes them tick. And ladies, they're ALL great looking, so eye candy is a factor.

11:15 - 12:45: Youth Hockey Game presented by Toyota
The Queen's Take: You're probably skipping this because you're getting to know the new boys. Sorry young-uns. Your time will come....

Noon - 4pm: Locker Room Tours
The Queen's Take: If you've done the locker room tour previously as part of Tip-A-King or some other event, this isn't a must do. But if you've never been or need a time filler, it's fun. One warning -- it smells like hockey down there, which can be good or bad depending on your point of view.

12:15 - 1:15: Alumni autograph session with Bernie Nicholls and Daryl Evans
The Queen's Take: If you can get to the front of the line and get out in 15 minutes, do it. Daryl Evans is a marvelous person and Bernie Nicholls is an absolute hoot! Just make sure you don't get stuck in line and miss the Kids press Conference.

12:30 - 1:30 "Kids Press Conference presented by Pizza Hut"- Matt Greene, Jonathan Quick, Kevin Westgarth and Kyle Clifford
The Queen's Take: DO NOT MISS! ABSOLUTELY a must-do. You will never laugh harder in your life. Prior press conferences included Brad Richardson singing and Wayne Simmonds and Teddy Purcell explaining why they weren't married and didn't have kids. Plus if Matt Greene is part of an event you KNOW it will be fun. Personally, I can't wait to see how Quickie is going to handle this because he has a wacky sense of humor. And something tells me The Big Red Dog will be worth the price of admission all on his own.

Kids ask the best questions.

1:00 - 2:15 Bailey's Family Skate
The Queen's Take: This event overlaps with a couple of other things, but it is BAILEY. Who doesn't love that lion? Skate on up and give him a hug. Just watch out for "Air Bailey." He's mean. Don't ask how I know, just trust me on this one.

2:00 - 3:00 Player Autograph Session
The Queen's Take: For me, this could be hit or miss depending on the players involved. If Drew is there, you know where to find me. Otherwise, maybe not. I personally think Tip-A-King is a much better venue to really chat with the players and get your autographs and photos. But if you think this is your one shot this season to meet your favorite player, have at it. Just keep in mind that the lines are always long and you may miss out on other stuff.

2:30 - 3:30 "LA Kings Shoot Out Showdown presented by The Upper Deck Company" - judged by Kings players
The Queen's Take: Every year the Kings throw in some new event and no one has any idea what it is. That may make it a must do by default, especially since the players are judging. The question is which players? One approach is to scope it out at the start, then leave if it doesn't look as interesting as you thought. That's probably how I'll play it.

3:00 - 4:00 "Miracle on Manchester" Q & A
The Queen's Take: I love the Miracle on Manchester stories as much as anyone, but for me the Kings told the story most perfectly at the first Hockey Fest. This one is probably a skip for me.  Unless Bob Miller is leading the discussion, and then I'll go just because I love Bob that much.

3:30 - 4:45 Alumni Autograph Session
The Queen's Take: Once again, depends on who's there.

3:45 - 5:00 Hockey Game featuring members of the LA City Fire Department. The Kings will unveil special LAFD Kings jerseys during this event that will be auctioned off (autographed by LA Kings players) at with proceeds benefiting the Widows, Orphans & Disabled Fireman's Fund.
The Queen's Take: This should be fun, plus it's actual LIVE HOCKEY. Firemen are usually gorgeous, and who doesn't need another cool jersey for their collection? And you might even find a player that would like to be a fireman!

Oh hi there, Matt Greene! How about a fireman's carry?

5:00 Hockey Fest '11 Officially Closed

**Events and schedule subject to change.

If you still don't have your tickets, what are you waiting for? Get on the Kings website NOW and don't miss this great event.  It's the best $20 you'll ever spend -- at least until the season gets started.


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