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Gibson Lake Winter Classic

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Gibson Lake Winter Classic

The Gibson Lake Winter Classic (GLWC) is an outdoor ice hockey tournament held annually on Gibson Lake in Georgian Bay Township, District of Muskoka, located 45 minutes north of the city of Barrie, Ontario.

Contents

The tournament was founded in the summer of 2008 by L.Munro and G.Cooke while vacationing at the Lake. The first tournament was held that winter in early 2009.

P.D'Angelo and L.Munro are the current commissioner's of the tournament.

The tournament is typically held the first weekend of February with teams battling for the GLWC Trophy. Names of the winning players and coaches are engraved on the GLWC Trophy to honour the tournament champions each year.

During the months leading up to the tournament the GLWC trophy is on display at the lake and protected by the Keepers of the Cup.

The builders

The tournament would not be possible without the hard work and dedication of the builders: Dave Beedie, John Walsh, Jim Crow and Don and Donna Masson.

Construction

Construction of the rink begins one month prior to the annual event. Gibson Lake typically provides perfect weather conditions for formation of the ice, however countless man hours are required to generate a suitable playing surface for the tournament.

Ice resurfacer

In 2011 a custom built Ice Resurfacer (aka "zamboni") was created by the builders.

(2009) Inaugural GLWC Tournament

Date: January 31, 2009

Weather: Overcast. Snow. -18 °C.

Champions: Team 1

Runner Up: Team 2

MVP: Layne Chambers

Participants/Teams:

Tournament notes and highlights:

The 1st annual tournament featured 9 participants. 4 teams of 2 were created with one goaltender. The teams were designated 1 through 4. The tournament was played round robin style with each team playing each other twice. Rules consisted of games up to 5 with take backs required to a designated spot by the defensive team after a shot from the attacking team was registered on goal. Points were totaled at the end of the round robin with the last place team being eliminated from the playoffs. The 2nd and 3rd place teams faced off in a 1-game playoff up to 5. 1st place received a bye to the finals where they would meet the winner of 2nd vs 3rd.

Team 1 was victorious over Team 2 in the finals on a snowy Saturday afternoon.

(2010) Second annual GLWC

Date: February 6, 2010

Weather: Clear. Sunny. -12 °C

Champions: Team Black

Runner Up: Team Red

MVP: Andrew McLaughlin

Participants/Teams:

Tournament Notes and Highlights:

The Gibson Lake Winter Classic Trophy was created prior to this tournament to honour the winning team members each year by engraving their names in duct tape and securing them to the trophy forever. A ceremony was held for the 2009 champions prior to puck drop in 2010.

The 2nd annual tournament featured 10 participants. 3 teams of 3 were created with one goaltender. The teams were split by jersey colour (black, red, white). The tournament was again played round robin style with each team playing each other twice. Rules remained unchanged. Points were totaled at the end of the round robin with the 2nd and 3rd place teams facing off in another 1 game playoff up to 5. 1st place received a bye to the finals where they would meet the winner of 2nd vs 3rd.

Team Black was victorious over Team Red in overtime on a controversial game-winning goal still debated to this day. The Gibson Lake Winter Classic Trophy was raised for the second time by Andrew McLaughlin on Saturday, February 6, 2010.

(2011) Third annual GLWC

Date: February 5, 2011

Weather: Clear. Sunny. -5 °C.

Champions: The Canadians

Runner Up: The Penguins

MVP: Adam Montgomery

Participants/Teams:

Tournament Notes and Highlights:

The 3rd annual tournament featured the most participants to date. 13 players (split into 3 teams of 4 with one goaltender), played in yet another round robin with each team playing each other twice.

Jerseys were created for the first time at this year's event (previously all jerseys were donated by Andrew McLaughlin). Each team was given a name and jersey crested with the now official Gibson Lake Winter Classic Logo (seen above).

The teams consisted of: The Canadians, The Penguins, The Blackhawks and The Leafs.

Sadly three jerseys were lost on transport to the tournament and never recovered. Additional jerseys were created after the tournament and provided to the players who went without during the tournament.

Rules remained unchanged. Points were totaled at the end of the round robin with the 2nd and 3rd place teams facing off in another 1 game playoff up to 5. 1st place received a bye to the finals where they would meet the winner of 2nd vs 3rd.

The Canadians were victorious over The Penguins in a thrilling overtime shootout. Adam Montgomery playing in his first GLWC netted the game tying goal as well as the shootout winner in the final to secure his spot as tournament MVP. He famously snubbed Layne Chambers after his game tying goal to also receive the nickname "Montsnubery". Captain Nick Leonard hoisted his first Gibson Lake Winter Classic Trophy on Saturday, February 5, 2011 along with Adam, Jeremy Clough and Brandon Young.

(2012) Fourth annual GLWC

Date: February 4, 2012

Weather: Clear. Sunny. -8 °C

Champions: The Canucks

Runner Up: The Flames

MVP: Pierre D'Angelo

Participants/Teams:

Tournament Notes and Highlights:

The 4th annual tournament featured a total of 14 players (split into 3 teams of 3 and 1 team of 4). The teams consisted of: The Canucks, The Jets, The Oilers and The Flames. One goaltender was utilized again.

With the addition of a fourth team the round robin format was changed slightly with all teams making the playoffs and the first place team being granted home ice advantage throughout the playoffs. The 1st Place Flames played the 4th place Oilers, while the 2nd Place Jets Played the 3rd Place Canucks. Both semi-finals went to multi-round shootouts with the Flames and Canucks coming out on top. The highlight of the semi-finals was the Canuck's stay at home defenseman, Tim Hinschberger, scoring the decisive sudden death shootout goal in the 8th round of the shootout to seal his teams trip to the final.

The finals saw The Canucks shock the 1st place Flames in regulation 4 - 2. The game was delayed several times as Chris Prosia was hurt multiple times after being hit with errant pucks. Adam Taylor scored the final goal from behind the net on a noticeably tired and confused Pierre D'Angelo, playing in his 15th straight game. Despite his poor performance in the finals, his strong play throughout the tournament earned him MVP honours as voted by the fans and all participants. Captain Andrew Slomka raised his first Gibson Lake Winter Classic Trophy on Saturday, February 2, 2012 along with teammates and first time Champions Adam Taylor and Tim Hinschberger.

(2013) Fifth anniversary of the GLWC

Date: February 2, 2013

Weather: Snow squalls/overcast. -12 °C

Champions: The Kings

Runner Up: The Wild

MVP: A. Slomka

Participants/Teams:

Tournament Notes and Highlights:

The 5th annual tournament featured a total of 13 players (split into 3 teams of 3 with 1 goalie).

Each team wore a commemorative 5th Anniversary Patch on the right shoulder of their jersey in celebration of 5 great years (2009 to 2013)

Pierre D'Angelo was unavailable for the tournament, which left the grueling goaltending duties to Lee Munro. Newcomer Oliver "Ollie" Wade took the vacant forward position on the North Stars. The round robin (won by the North Stars) was intense. The Wild and Kings would win outright in the playoffs and meet in the finals. The Kings were victorious with Captain Andrew Slomka taking home MVP and his second championship in as many years.

(2014) Sixth annual GLWC

Date: February 1, 2014

Weather: Snow squalls. -15 °C

Champions:  CANRed

Runner Up:  CANBlack

MVP: Brian Clarke -  CANRed

Participants/Teams:

Tournament Notes and Highlights:

The 6th Annual Tournament commemorated the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia. It featured 14 players (split into 3 teams of 4 and 2 goalies). 2014 marked the first time two goalies were utilized in the tournament. Due to prior commitments, a number of the original GLWC participants were unable to attend the tournament. 6 players made their GLWC debut.

In the end  CANRed was victorious over  CANBlack with All-Star defenseman Brian Clarke taking home MVP honours.*M.Andrews won the shootout tournament

(2015) Seventh annual GLWC

Date: January 31, 2015

Weather: Light Snow Flurries. -10 °C

Champions: Prince of Wales All-Stars (White)

Runner Up: GLWC All-Stars (Black)

Round-Robin Champions: GLWC All-Stars (Black)

MVP: Chris Prosia - Clarence Campbell All-Stars (Orange)

Participants/Teams:

Tournament Notes and Highlights:

The 7th Annual Tournament took place on January 31, 2015. Jerseys of the 1986 All-Stars were worn. 14 players returned to Gibson Lake to battle for the trophy (split into 3 teams of 4 and 2 goalies). For better flow of games the round robin consisted of a 12-minute period or first to 5 goals. If tied after regulation a shootout would follow. Point for wins, loss and shootout loss were recorded. Sudden death overtime would decide all playoff games.

The semi-finals were not without controversy as a crucial go ahead goal was disallowed. The Prince of Wales All-Stars, (0-4-0) in the round robin, beat the Clarence Campbell All-Stars (3-1-0) to secure their spot in the finals.

After dominating the round robin, the GLWC All-Stars (3-0-1) fell by a score of 5-3 to the surprise challengers the Prince of Wales All-Stars. Chris Prosia won the "Beauty Bucket" trophy as MVP of the tournament by a split decision. Also, for the first time ever, the award for "Biggest Disappointment" was also handed out. To the surprise of nobody, Andrew McLaughlin took home the honours in a landslide.

(2016) Eighth annual GLWC

Date: February 6, 2016

Weather: Overcast, Light Snow Flurries. 0 °C

Champions: équipe Blanche

Runner Up: équipe Rouge

Round-Robin Champions: équipe Rouge

MVP: A. Bouchard - équipe Blanche

Participants/Teams:

  • Denotes Champions
  • Tournament Notes and Highlights:

    The 8th Annual Tournament was played on February 6, 2016. Unseasonably high temperatures made maintenance of the ice surface nearly impossible. Conditions were not ideal and contributed to a condensed tournament format. Each team played each other once with the final game of the round robin determining the first-place finisher. 2nd and 3rd would square off in a 1-game elimination round with the winner moving to the finals.

    A new temporary logo was designed to match the 8th Jersey worn at the GLWC which featured a white, red and blue (Le Bleu-Blanc-Rouge) style jersey of the 1972 Nordiques. 16 players battled for the trophy (split into 3 teams of 4 or 5 and 2 goalies).

    The semi-finals

    The finals

    Adam Bouchard won the "Beauty Bucket" trophy as MVP of the tournament.

    (2017) Ninth annual GLWC

    Date: TBD

    Weather: TBD

    Champions: TBD

    Runner Up: TBD

    Round-Robin Champions: TBD

    MVP: TBD - Team TBD

    Participants/Teams:

    Tournament Notes and Highlights:

    The 9th Annual Tournament is to be announced.

    "Beauty Bucket"

    Legend of how the "Beauty Bucket" came to be remains unclear to this day. Only true Beauties are capable of wearing the Bucket which first appeared at the 2015 tournament (7th Annual). Past MVPs (previously selected by the Commissioners) were granted access to the Beauty Bucket prior the 2015 tournament.

    Today votes are cast by participating members of the tournament for whom they deem worthy of such an honour. Any participant may claim the prize and decisions are final. The Initials of previous MVPs are engraved in the Beauty Bucket along with a maple leaf recognizing the number of tournaments played. The MVP maintains ownership of the Beauty Bucket until puck drop at the tournament the following year. Previous MVPs are listed below.

    Tournament MVP list

    List of True Beauties and former wearers of the "Beauty Bucket"

    References

    Gibson Lake Winter Classic Wikipedia


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