"The original plan was we wanted to show how much fun it is to go up there with your best friends who all love to play hockey together -- it's a good dynamic that way. There's a lot more going on, but we wanted to keep it pretty fun and uplifting because that's what it's all about -- being with your friends." -- Brian Ceci
Each February, eight long-time friends abandon the bustle of Vancouver's downtown and head north on Highway 97 toward 100-Mile House, in the south Cariboo region of the British Columbia wilderness. Their destination is a rustic waterfront cabin near Green Lake, B.C., best known as a trout-fishing and bird-watching haven for summer travelers.
The friends use the lake for an entirely different, but quintessentially Canadian, purpose: Pond hockey.
The good feelings that come from the annual pilgrimage to play outdoor hockey is hard for its participants to describe. It's a bond shared among friends, punctuated by the camaraderie most easily expressed in jokes and jabs throughout the weekend. And don't forget the healthy portion of grueling, day-long hockey marathons.