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No Rain on This Parade

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins

Halifax, NS -- Brad Marchand had some tense moments as he, like the rest of North America's East Coast, waited out Hurricane Irene's fury on Sunday and when it seemed certain that planes wouldn't be flying on schedule on Monday morning, he certainly had a few moments of worry.

But a few phone calls and a solid plan B put the Cup back on the road to Halifax on what turned out to be a gorgeous -- albeit windy -- sunny day in Nova Scotia for Marchand's day with the Stanley Cup.

"My dad [Kevin] did a great job of setting up a car to take me, my uncles, my cousins and a few buddies up to PEI," said Brad. "We drove up last night and spent the night there and we had a little hiccup this morning -- the bridge was closed -- and we couldn't get back on the car we went over on.

"So we had to take three taxi vans over the bridge and have a couple more cars meet us on the other side to bring us back to town, but it all worked out all right."

It certainly did, but Marchand couldn't have been shocked to see his family step up on his behalf. They've been doing that his entire career.

As such, Brad was thrilled to be able to use his moment with Stanley to show the world just how important his family and friends are in his life.

"It's very important," said Marchand. "Family is everything and through my whole life and everything I've done, everyone else in my family's done it [too].

"The support that everyone shows; it doesn't matter what it is. Going to work, hockey, volleyball -- whatever it is -- every sport, my family is there every step of the way and it's really amazing how everyone comes together to support each other.

"So, coming through everything, they've been with me every step of the way and it's just that much better to share with them all," he said.

Marchand expanded that sharing to include all of Halifax.

"Well, obviously I grew up here and we have a hockey crazy town at any time," he said. "Something big like this, that has to do with hockey, and everyone will come out and support each other.

"It's amazing, just being around town, how many people love the Bruins and are excited about the team winning.

"So, to bring it back here is very special," said Marchand.

The forward spoke about his other special city, Boston, and explained that some of his favorite moments of the playoffs revolved about the Hub of Hockey's support for the B's.

"I think the best part of it all was pulling through each step and realizing how much it took to win each round," said Marchand. "Then, even after we won the semifinals, being around the city and seeing how much the city and town was enjoying the whole thing was pretty special."

Brad's special day in Halifax seemed to hit all all the marks, too.

"We're going to hang out with the family here for a bit and do some pictures with thema and then we're going to go to the IWK Children's Hospital," said Marchand. "Obviously, that's a big thing to be able to share with the kids.

"Then we're going to have a parade and a little proclamation with the city.

"We're going to go out to the rink where I played my minor hockey and have an opportunity for people to come out there and share the day with me," added Marchand. "It's going to be fun."

It was fun to see Marchand's face as he put the Cup through its paces on a day that matched the banner that now hangs in the St. Margaret's Centre, which proclaimed "Small Towns Big Dreams."

And it was even more fun to see Brad point to the children in the crowd at his own minor hockey arena and tell them to keep dreaming, that their own dreams can come true, and that the proof was right there on the stage with him -- the Stanley Cup.

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