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NHL Heritage Classic

Heritage Classic Spectator Plaza a hit with fans

Family-friendly pregame festival celebrates sport of hockey

NHL.com @NHL

WINNIPEG -- Ronin Dykerman has shot a lot of pucks on goal in his life, but the 10-year old Winnipeg Jets fan had a new target Saturday at the Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic Spectator Plaza: a washer and dryer.

The plaza, a hockey-themed, family-friendly official pregame fan festival, was packed Saturday as fans with tickets for the 2016 Rogers NHL Heritage Classic Alumni Game at Investors Group Field celebrated the game of hockey.

One popular attraction Saturday was the High Liner Target Practice, where fans like Ronin fired pucks at an open clothes dryer and washing machine stacked on top of each other. A puck in the dryer was worth 10 points and a shot into the washing machine got the shooter five points.

"It's pretty great," Ronin said about the Spectator Plaza, which is open to fans with tickets to the alumni game and the 2016 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic between the Jets and Edmonton Oilers on Sunday (3 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, TVA Sports, NHL.TV).. "I think it's really cool. There is a lot of stuff to do here."

The plaza will be open on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sum 41 will play a pregame concert.

In addition to the target practice attraction, other interactive stops include the Reeses Sharp Shooter and the Molson Canadian Bubble Hockey, which was a huge hit at the Scotiabank 2016 World Cup of Hockey Fan Village in Toronto.

Fans got an extra treat Saturday when Jets forward Mark Scheifele and Oilers forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins stepped onto the Spectator Plaza stage for a brief interview.

Sunny skies and temperatures in the high 40s made it a hockey fan's dream come true.

"The opportunity to spend an all-day event is great," Ronin's dad Jeff, said. "It's not just the game; you get to experience other stuff."

The day wasn't a total win for Jeff as Ronin defeated him 20-10 in the target practice game.

"We had a competition to see who gets the most points," Ronin said. "I won on the last shot."

For complete Spectator Plaza information, go here.

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