Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Canadiens Unveil Centennial Initiatives

The Canadiens unveiled Wednesday the details surrounding the club’s Centennial Program, spread out over the 2008-09 and 2009-10 seasons, leading to its 100th anniversary, on December 4, 2009.

The Centennial celebrations will provide a unique opportunity for Canadiens’ fans across Quebec and throughout the world to honor the team’s heroes and builders of yesteryears and relive the great moments that shaped the Canadiens’ rich history.

The first initiative will take place on October 15, on the Canadiens’ 2008-09 home opener with the unveiling of the Ring of Honor celebrating the 44 players and 10 builders enshrined in the Hockey Hall of Fame. A few days later, on October 20 fans will be treated to the first of twelve Centennial Jersey Nights featuring Canadiens players donning the first of six vintage jerseys.

Following the Builder’s Night, on October 28, when the all-time greatest Canadiens coaches will be honored, Patrick Roy’s no. 33 jersey will be raised to the Bell Centre rafters during a ceremony on November 22. As part of the Original Six Salute, the Canadiens will play host to the New York Rangers on December 4 and the Toronto Maple Leafs on January 8. Hockey fans will have a chance to cheer on the game’s brightest stars with the presentation of the 57th NHL All-Star Game that will be preceded by a week of events and festivities leading to the annual classic.

On December 4, the Centennial Plaza will be inaugurated featuring monuments of the Canadiens greatest legends. During that month, the Montreal Canadiens and the Canadiens Children’s Foundation will launch the first community hockey rink in the Saint-Michel borough, in Montreal. The project will provide the youth of this neighbourhood with a playing ground that can be used during the entire year.

Finally, in April 2009, the Canadiens’ Hall of Fame will open its doors to the public, offering hockey enthusiasts a unique window on the Canadiens’ history, with exhibits and artefacts focusing the team’s legacy.

On April 2, 2009, the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, under conductor Kent Nagano, will celebrate its 75th anniversary and will perform a concert honoring the Canadiens at the Bell Centre. The final event scheduled for the 2008-09 season will be the NHL Entry Draft to be held at the Bell Centre on June 26-27.

One of several major initiatives in the 2009-10 season will be public launch of the motion picture “Pour Toujours, les Canadiens!.” The Centennial celebrations will come to an end with the Centennial Game, on December 4, 2009, at the Bell Centre, followed on the next day by the Centennial Gala.

In planning for the celebrations, including other events that will soon be announced, the Montreal Canadiens wish to put forth the team’s glorious achievements over the last century while honoring the fans and building a lasting legacy in our community.

2008-2009 SEASON
October 2008
20. Centennial Jersey Night vs. Florida Panthers (1970 – 1971)
28. Builder’s Night (coaches) vs. Carolina Hurricanes

November 2008
15. Centennial Jersey Night vs. Philadelphia Flyers (1945 – 1946)
22. Retired Jersey Night - Patrick Roy – vs. Boston Bruins

December 2008
4. Opening of the Centennial Plaza
Original Six Salute vs. New York Rangers
Centennial Jersey Night (1915 – 1916)
10. Inauguration of the Community outdoor rink program (François-Perreault Park, St-Michel Borough)

January 2009
8. Original Six salute vs Toronto Maple Leafs
23-26. NHL All-Star Week

February 2009
1. Centennial Jersey Night vs. Boston Bruins (1912 – 1913)
21. Centennial Jersey Night vs. Ottawa Senators (1970 – 1971)

March 2009
14. Centennial Jersey Night vs. New Jersey Devils (1945 – 1946)
21. Centennial Jersey Night vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (1915 – 1916)
31. Centennial Jersey Night vs. Chicago Blackhawks (1912 – 1913)

April 2009
2. Montreal Symphony Orchestra Concert at the Bell Centre
Opening of the Montreal Canadiens Hall of Fame

June 2009
26-27 NHL Entry Draft at the Bell Centre

2009-2010 SEASON

October, November, December 2009
Centennial Jersey Nights (1910 – 1911, 1909 – 1910)

December 2009
Public launch of the Canadiens motion picture « Pour toujours, les Canadiens ! »

4. Centennial game at the Bell Centre
5. Centennial Gala


beliveau1 said...

I sure hope the Habs pay some sort of respect to the small town of Cobalt somewhere along the way.
Now a mere ghost town with a population of a little over a thousand it was home to the first team that played against what is now hockey's most storied franchise. Born and raised in the town I am as a lifelong Habs fan, very proud to lay claim to a link to that bit of historical trivia.....
It would be a fitting tribute to the birth of the greatest team in professional sports that owes its' humble beginnings to a town that was once the silver capital of the world?

FrankD said...

What e-mail address can I use to drop you a line?


Robert L said...

frankd - Because of e-mail spam, I'll post it this way:


Robert L said...


A similar notion has been running through my head as well.

My home of Cornwall is also Newsy Lalonde's place of birth and upbringing. He was the Habs first star 100 seasons ago.

Hockeyville 2009 in Cornwall?

A game between the NHL's two oldest franchises in a small city that is one hour away from each of these two clubs.

It fits perfectly, really!

beliveau1 said...

With 100 years of history it is a challenge to cover all of the ground that this organization entails....
I'm over 50 and have seen more than half or the Cups this team has won. My father who passed away a few years ago was fortunate to have been alive for all of those Cups! Between the 2 of us we've watched the Habs since their beginnings. I left the Cobalt area a little over 30 years ago but still have family(including my mom) living there. It has become a shell of what it once was - few could ever begin to conceive that it once had a pro team that would have played the Habs in their first ever game? Like you are interested in seeing an honour given to your home town as the birth place of Newsy Lalonde, I am really hoping they will have some recognition for that first game and owner Ambrose O'Brien who owed a big part of his fortune to the silver mines of Cobalt.....