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Bruins reward restaurant workers for late-night service

by Staff

There will be at least three Toronto Maple Leafs fans packed inside TD Garden when the Boston Bruins host the Toronto Maple Leafs on Monday in Game 7 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series (7 p.m. ET, CBNC, CBC, RDS).

And they'll be there courtesy of the Bruins.

A mechanical problem with the team's plane meant the Bruins had to stay overnight in Toronto after losing Game 6 on Sunday. Tired and hungry, the team wanted a bite to eat before returning to the hotel, so a member of the organization called the Canyon Creek Chophouse in Mississauga, near the hotel the Bruins were booked into.

Restaurant service manager Lauren Grenier said she received the call at 11 p.m., when she and the staff was closing, asking if they could accommodate a party of about 50.

"I had literally closed the till for my bartender and we were closing in five minutes and I get this phone call," Grenier told the (Toronto) Globe and Mail. "And they’re like, hey, there's about 50 of us coming down to your restaurant, it's the Boston Bruins. And I'm like, sure it is. I didn't believe them because we're always playing pranks on each other here at work late at night."

Grenier said she told the caller they would do what they could if they arrived in the next 10 minutes.

About 10 minutes later, a bus pulled into the parking lot and members of the Bruins began getting off.

"And then it was just chaos," Grenier said. "We just started hammering out the food for them. It was just so awkward. We had all the music off, but we had the TV on, I think with the Detroit game. And they were all sitting there and it was so quiet because they had lost.

"But they ate so much food -- steaks, chicken, pasta and salad. Some of them were a little picky and wanted personal things off the menus. We tried to do whatever we could for them."

Grenier said additional servers were brought in from a nearby Jack Astor's, which is owned by the same company.

As the late-night meal was winding down, Grenier said she was chatting with a Bruins executive about how much fun it would be to attend a Game 7.

"Somebody in the party said, well how many tickets do you want?" Grenier said.

She said four, and at 4:30 a.m., Grenier and three other workers started the 10-hour drive from Toronto to Boston for Game 7.

"Three of us will be wearing Leafs jerseys," Grenier said. "Darren [Boast, server] is a Boston fan."

The Bruins, who finally made it home Monday morning, were more than happy with the service.

"The Canyon Creek staff did an amazing job with almost no notice, and made our team a great meal," Matthew Chmura, vice-president of communications and content with the Boston Bruins, told the Globe and Mail in an e-mail.

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